Early experience with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) indicates that it is well suited as a noninvasive vascular imaging modality. Blood flow at physiologic velocities results in a low signal within the vessel lumen and this property allows the separation of flowing blood from surrounding soft tissues. While flow effects, aneurysms, and mural lesions have been emphasized in the literature, vascular occlusions have received less attention. We evaluated 21 patients with documented venous or arterial occlusions on a 0.12-T developmental resistive unit. Venous occlusions caused by thrombus generally appeared as focal regions of increased signal. In 3 of 10 cases the venous thrombus itself could not be identified but the absence of a low-signal lumen in a normal location confirmed the impression of thrombus. In 2 of 17 venous occlusions a rim of low signal was noted around the thrombus. Venous collaterals were commonly seen. Tumor thrombus tended to have signal characteristics similar to the main bulk of the tumor from which it arose. There were four arterial occlusions including two cases of emboli, one arteriosclerotic occlusion, and one case of tumor invasion. Vascular calcifications, clearly evident on plain radiographs, were not seen on MRI. MRI appears to be a potentially useful noninvasive means of detecting vascular occlusions.