Magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) is a special type of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exam that produces detailed images of the hepatobiliary and pancreatic systems, including the liver, gallbladder, bile ducts, pancreas and pancreatic duct. Fluid naturally present in the ducts serves as a contrast substance. MRCP produces images similar to an ERCP, (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography) and is an excellent tool for visualizing blockages in the ducts and pancreatic cysts, but without the risks of an invasive ERCP. MRCP may be used to diagnose an alternative cause of jaundice or elevated liver function such as bile duct stones, tumors in the small bowel near the opening of the bile and pancreatic duct, or a type of pancreatic tumor called intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN).
Your physician will give you detailed instructions on how to prepare for your MRCP. Please inform your physician regarding a recent illness or other medical conditions.
Women should inform their physician if they are pregnant, or if there is any possibility they may be pregnant.