MR line scan diffusion imaging of the brain in children.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE MR imaging of the self-diffusion of water has become increasingly popular for the early detection of cerebral infarction in adults. The purpose of this study was to evaluate MR line scan diffusion imaging (LSDI) of the brain in children. METHODS LSDI was performed in four volunteers and 12 patients by using an effective TR/TE of 2736/89.4 and a maximum b value of 450 to 600 s/mm2 applied in the x, y, and z directions. In the volunteers, single-shot echo planar imaging of diffusion (EPID) was also performed. The patients (10 boys and two girls) ranged in age from 2 days to 16 years (average age, 6.6 years). Diagnoses included acute cerebral infarction, seizure disorder, posttraumatic confusion syndrome, complicated migraine, residual astrocytoma, encephalitis, hypoxia without cerebral infarction, cerebral contusion, and conversion disorder. In all patients, routine spin-echo images were also acquired. Trace images and apparent diffusion coefficient maps were produced for each location scanned with LSDI. RESULTS In the volunteers, LSDI showed less chemical-shift and magnetic-susceptibility artifact and less geometric distortion than did EPID. LSDI was of diagnostic quality in all studies. Diffusion abnormalities were present in five patients. Restricted diffusion was present in the lesions of the three patients with acute cerebral infarction. Mildly increased diffusion was present in the lesions of encephalitis and residual cerebellar astrocytoma. No diffusion abnormalities were seen in the remaining seven children. CONCLUSION LSDI is feasible in children, provides high-quality diffusion images with less chemical-shift and magnetic-susceptibility artifact and less geometric distortion than does EPID, and complements the routine MR examination.

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