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Magn Reson Imaging Clin N Am. 1996 Feb;4(1):87-100.

Contrast-enhanced MR imaging of the pancreas.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA.


Recent MR techniques such as breath-hold imaging, fat suppression, and dynamic imaging after intravenous administration of gadolinium chelates have reduced artifacts in the abdomen, resulting in an increased role of MR imaging in the evaluation of pancreatic disease. The extracellular contrast agent gadolinium chelate has been shown to enhance normal pancreatic tissue in a homogeneous fashion. Contrast between normal pancreatic tissue and tumor tissue on T1-weighted images may be improved after administration of gadolinium. Because of the lesser vascularization of pancreatic ductal cancers as compared to the normal glandular tissue, the differences in signal intensity are often greatest in the capillary phase immediately after contrast administration. In addition, the hypervascular nature of islet cell tumors, results in good definition of primary tumor and liver metastases on immediate post-gadolinium images.

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