Purpose: To investigate the feasibility of measuring myocardial T2 at 3 Tesla for assessment of tissue iron in thalassemia major and other iron overloaded patients. Materials and Methods: A single-breathhold electrocardiogram-triggered black-blood multi-echo spin-echo (MESE) sequence with a turbo factor of 2 was implemented at 3 Tesla (T). Myocardial and liver T2 values were measured with three repeated breathholds in 8 normal subjects and 24 patients. Their values, together with the T2* values measured using a breathhold multi-echo gradient-echo sequence, were compared with those at 1.5T in the same patients. Results: At 3T, myocardial T2 was found to be 39.6 ± 7.4 ms in normal subjects. In patients, it ranged from 12.9 to 50.1 ms. T2 and T2* were observed to correlate in heart (ρ = 0.93, ρ = 0.0001) and liver (P = 0.95, P < 0.0001). Myocardial T2 and T2* at 3T were also highly correlated with the 1.5T measurements. Preliminary results indicated that myocardial T2 quantitation was relatively insensitive to B1 variation, and reproducible with 3.2% intra-exam and 3.8% inter-exam variations. Conclusion: Myocardial T2 quantitation is feasible at 3T. Given the substantially decreased T2* and increased B0 inhomogeneity, the rapid myocardial T2 measurement protocol demonstrated here may present a robust alternative to study cardiac iron overload at 3T.
- Cardiac MR
- Iron overload
- Tissue iron
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging