Optimal breathing protocol for dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI of solitary pulmonary nodules at 3 T

Aya Kino, Masaya Takahashi, Simon K. Ashiku, Malcolm M. Decamp, Robert E. Lenkinski, Hiroto Hatabu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to evaluate optimal breathing maneuvers that minimize lung parenchymal movement for dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI), which requires longer scan times, beyond the limit of a single breath hold. A healthy volunteer was scanned on a 3 T MR scanner using two different breathing maneuvers. In the first, the healthy volunteer was instructed to hold his breath as much as possible and breathe in between breath holds while an image was obtained. In the second, the volunteer was instructed to breathe shallowly and freely throughout the scan. On the obtained images, the excursion of the highest point of the right diaphragm and the pulmonary vessel branches located in the four different anatomic regions of the lung were measured in two orthogonal planes. A patient with a solitary pulmonary nodule (SPN) underwent DCE-MRI utilizing a 2D spoiled gradient-echo (SPGR) sequence while the patient breathed shallowly and freely during the scan. The standard deviations of the excursion of the highest point and selected pulmonary vessels were much smaller during shallow, free breathing maneuver scans than those during breath hold maneuver scans. A dynamic perfusion-fitting curve of the SPN was obtained during the DCE-MRI using shallow free breathing. Shallow, free breathing allows smaller diaphragmatic cranial caudal and lung parenchymal displacements. Therefore, it can be useful during exams where targeting of the lesion is necessary, in studies with long scan times, such as dynamic MRI. This breathing maneuver makes it possible to analyze SPN with DCE-MRI while making use of the advantages of a higher magnetic field in conjunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)397-400
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean journal of radiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 2007


  • 3 T MRI
  • Breathing motion
  • Dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI
  • Solitary pulmonary nodules

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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