BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Magnetocardiography (MCG) is a noninvasive method for the registration of the magnetic component of electromagnetic fields in the heart that arise from electrical activity during the cardiac cycle. It has a theoretical advantage, over ECG, for the detection of coronary artery disease (CAD), mainly due to its higher sensitivity for local currents and better spatial resolution. However, its clinical value in the diagnosis of CAD, compared to other diagnostic tools, remains untested. The feasibility of MCG for detecting myocardial ischemia was studied. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Ninety three patients (54 male, 39 female) with chest pain were enrolled in this study. Patients with a pacemaker or other metal implants, as well as those in unstable conditions, were excluded. Coronary angiography was performed on all the patients, following ECG and MCG measurements, on the same day. Coronary artery disease was diagnosed when intraluminal narrowing was greater than 70%. The ECG and MCG findings were compared to those of the coronary angiography, which was used as the gold standard. RESULTS: Forty two patients were diagnosed with CAD by the coronary angiography. The sensitivities and specificities of MCG and ECG for detecting a CAD were 76.2 and 47.1%, and 38.1 and 86.3%, respectively. Seventy patients showed non-diagnostic ECG for CAD. The sensitivity and specificity of MCG for detecting a CAD in this group of patients were 69.2 and 52.3%, respectively. CONCLUSION: MCG is a novel noninvasive technique for the diagnosis of coronary artery disease, but further investigation for the optimization of the efficacy of this technology will be required.