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The Brachial Plexus at 3T MRI: Efficiency of Blood-Suppression Pulse to Reduce Background Signal Intensity 2013

Category General Spine Tsutomu Inaoka
Hideyasu Kudo
Tomoya Nakatsuka
Noriko Kitamura
Shusuke Kasuya
Rumiko Kasai
Mitsuyuki Tozawa
Hitoshi Terada
Purpose To assess the efficacy of blood-supression pulse to reduce background signal intensity from the venous fow for the brachial plexus at 3T MRI Materials & Methods Four asymptomatic males (mean age: 26years) were enrolled in this study. All MRIs were performed by using Siemens Magnetom Skyra 3T and neck plus body coils. At the brachial plexus, STIR images using 3D FSE sampling perfection with application optimized contrasts using different flip angle evolution (SPACE) sequence with and without blood-suppression pulses were obtained in coronal plane. Slice thickness was 0.8mm. We measured the signal intensities of the cervical nerves, ganglia, veins, and muscles on the STIR coronal maximum intensity projection images with and without blood-suppression pulses, and compared the contrast-ratios (cervical nerve-vein, ganglia-vein, and muscle-vein) on the images with and without blood-suppression pulses. Results Under blood-suppression pulse, average percentages of the decreased signal intensities were 8.1%, 16.6%, 26.7%, and 18.9% in the cervical nerves, ganglia, veins, and muscle, respectively. The contrast-ratios of cervical nerve-vein and ganglia-vein were significantly higher in coronal STIR images with blood-suppression pulse than those in coronal STIR images without blood-suppression pulse (p< .05). Conclusion The integration of blood-suppression pulse on 3D FSE SPACE STIR images may improve visualization of the brachial plexus at 3T MRI. References 1. Chhabra A, et al. High-resolution 3T MR neurography of the brachial plexus and its branches, with emphasis on 3D imaging. AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2012 (Epub ahead of print).