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J Magn Reson Imaging. 2006 Oct;24(4):825-32.

T1- and T2-weighted fast spin-echo imaging of the brachial plexus and cervical spine with IDEAL water-fat separation.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin 53792-3252, USA.



To compare the iterative decomposition of water and fat with echo asymmetry and least-squares estimation (IDEAL) method with fat-saturated T1-weighted (T1W) and T2W fast spin-echo (FSE) and short-TI inversion recovery (STIR) imaging of the brachial plexus and cervical spine.


Images acquired at 1.5T in five volunteers using fat-saturated T1W and T2W FSE imaging and STIR were compared with T1W and T2W IDEAL-FSE images. Examples of T1W and T2W IDEAL-FSE images acquired in patients are also shown.


T1W and T2W IDEAL-FSE demonstrated superior fat suppression (P<0.05) and image quality (P<0.05), compared to T1W and T2W fat-saturated FSE, respectively. SNR performance of T1W-IDEAL-FSE was similar to T1W FSE in the spinal cord (P=0.250) and paraspinous muscles (P=0.78), while T2W IDEAL-FSE had superior SNR in muscle (P=0.02) and CSF (P=0.02), and marginally higher cord SNR (P=0.09). Compared to STIR, T2W IDEAL-FSE demonstrated superior image quality (P<0.05), comparable fat suppression (excellent, P=1.0), and higher SNR performance (P<0.001).


IDEAL-FSE is a promising method for T1W and T2W imaging of the brachial plexus and cervical spine.

Copyright (c) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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