High resolution coronary MR angiography at 7 Tesla: comparison with standard bright blood and black blood imaging
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KeywordsCoronary Artery Disease Image Quality Magnetic Resonance Angiography Right Coronary Artery Vessel Diameter
The aim for ultrahigh field coronary MR angiography (MRA) is to convert the benefit of increased signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) to improved spatial resolution and thereby better vessel edge sharpness (VES), while vessel conspicuity is preserved. Furthermore, black blood coronary MRA has been shown to be an alternative technique to detect arterial remodeling in patients with coronary artery disease, but has never been performed at 7 Tesla. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to compare high resolution (HR) coronary magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) to standard bright blood (BriB) and black blood (BB) imaging at 7 Tesla.
Twenty-two healthy volunteers underwent navigator-gated 3D imaging of the right coronary artery (RCA) at 7 Tesla using three sequences: BriB (reference scan), HR and BB. Image post processing involved newly developed multiplanar reformatting to straighten the RCA. Image quality was determined by VES, SNR, contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR), visible vessel length and vessel diameter.
VES was statistically significantly higher in HR as compared to BriB (0.57 ± 0.1 vs 0.46 ± 0.06; p < 0.001), BriB was not significantly different from BB (0.44 ± 0.12; p = 0.858). SNR was higher in BriB than HR (115.6 ± 49.8 vs 33.4 ± 11.4; p < 0.001) and BB (38.3 ± 10.7; p < 0.001). CNR was highest in BriB (52.2 ± 26.7), as compared to HR (18.3 ± 7.6;p < 0.001) or BB (13.1 ± 4.9; p = 0.009). Visible vessel length and vessel diameter were similar for BriB, HR and BB (P > 0.05).
High resolution coronary MRA at 7 Tesla improves vessel edge sharpness as compared to standard bright blood imaging. Black blood coronary MRA at 7 Tesla is feasible, whereas image quality is lower as compared to standard bright blood imaging.
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