A novel RF coil attached to an invasive device, such as a catheter, is used to detect magnetic resonance (MR) signals for monitoring the position of the device within a subject and for the acquisition of high-resolution magnetic resonance images of the tissue surrounding the device. The novel coil is sensitive to a small volume of MR active tissue during tracking procedures, but is sensitive to a larger volume during imaging procedures. During tracking, the MR signals are detected in the presence of magnetic field gradients and thus have frequencies which are substantially proportional to the location of the coil along the direction of the applied gradient. Signals are detected responsive to applied magnetic gradients to determine the position of the coil in several dimensions. The position of the novel coil, and hence the device, as determined by the tracking system is superimposed upon independently acquired medical diagnostic images. Magnetic Resonance images of the tissue surrounding the novel coil can be obtained by detecting the MR response signals from the novel coil using gradient-recalled, spin-echo or other MR imaging sequences.