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Pediatr Radiol. 2002 Jul;32(7):518-22. Epub 2002 Apr 16.

MRI-based blood oxygen saturation measurements in infants and children with congenital heart disease.

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Department of Paediatrics and Division of Cardiology, The Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1X8, Canada.



Vessel oxygen saturation can be determined with MR oximetry using an in vivo measurement of signal decay (T2) and the calibration curve relating T2 to blood oxygen saturation (%HbO(2)), where: 1/T2=1/T2O+K (1-%HbO(2)/100)(2) and K is a constant parameter which correlates with measured fibrinogen levels. The ability to noninvasively measure %HbO(2) in cardiac chambers and vessels has enormous potential in children with congenital heart disease (CHD).


The purpose of the study was to prospectively characterize the T2-%HbO(2) relationship in infants where T2-%HbO(2) is the relationship between T2 and %HbO(2) (blood oxygen saturation) expressed by the equation given above, and to determine whether adult values for K and T2O (where T2O is the T2 of fully oxygenated blood) can be extrapolated to pediatric patients with CHD. A second objective was to apply this method to calculate the %HbO(2) in vivo using MR imaging in infants with CHD.


Fifteen patients with CHD undergoing cardiac catheterization (9 male; 6 female), median age 8 months, were recruited for the calibration study. T2O and K were measured directly from blood samples, compared with the values estimated from adult population statistics, and plotted against hematocrit and fibrinogen, respectively. In four studies of infants with CHD, T2 measurements were converted to %HbO(2) using the calibration curve.


The T2-%HbO(2) relationship in infants correlated with the adult calibration statistics (1/T2O vs. hematocrit, r=0.77; K vs. fibrinogen, r=0.61). Our initial in vivo studies demonstrated that the MR oximetry reflected the expected oxygen saturations.


Adult values for T2-%HbO(2) calibration can be used to measure blood oxygen saturation in vivo in children with CHD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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