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AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. 2014 Mar;35(3):519-23. doi: 10.3174/ajnr.A3795. Epub 2013 Nov 7.

Accuracy of postcontrast 3D turbo spin-echo MR sequence for the detection of enhanced inflammatory lesions in patients with multiple sclerosis.

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From the Departments of Neuroradiology (J.H., E.R., A.-L.B., J.-P.P., X.L.).



Therapeutic strategies for patients with MS partly rely on contrast-enhanced MR imaging. Our aim was to assess the diagnostic performance of 3D turbo spin-echo MR imaging with variable refocusing flip angles at 3T for the detection of enhanced inflammatory lesions in patients with multiple sclerosis.


Fifty-six patients with MS were prospectively investigated by using postcontrast T1-weighted axial 2D spin-echo and 3D TSE MR images. The order in which both sequences were performed was randomized. Axial reformats from 3D T1 TSE were generated to match the 2D spin-echo images. The reference standard was defined by using clinical data and all MR images available. Three separate sets of MR images (2D spin-echo images, axial reformats, and multiplanar images from 3D TSE sequences) were examined in a blinded fashion by 2 neuroradiologists separately for the detection of enhanced MS lesions. Image artifacts and contrast were evaluated.


No artifacts related to vascular pulsation were observed on 3D TSE images, whereas image artifacts were demonstrated on 2D spin-echo images in 41 patients. One hundred twelve enhanced MS lesions were identified in 19 patients. Sixty-four lesions were correctly diagnosed by using 2D spin-echo images; 90, by using 3D TSE axial reformatted views; and 106, by using multiplanar analysis of the 3D TSE sequence. Multiplanar analysis was 94.7% sensitive and 100% specific for the diagnosis of patients with at least 1 enhanced lesion. Contrast of enhanced MS lesions was significantly improved by using the 3D TSE sequence (P < .011).


The 3D TSE sequence with multiplanar analysis is a useful tool for the detection of enhanced MS lesions.

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