Quantification of hepatic blood flow using a high-resolution phase-contrast MRI sequence with compressed sensing acceleration

Hadrien A. Dyvorne, Ashley Knight-Greenfield, Cecilia Besa, Nancy Cooper, Julio Garcia-Flores, Thomas D. Schiano, Michael Markl, Bachir Taouli*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE. The objective of our study was to evaluate the performance of a high-spatial-resolution 2D phase-contrast (PC) MRI technique accelerated with compressed sensing for portal vein (PV) and hepatic artery (HA) flow quantification in comparison with a standard PC MRI sequence. SUBJECTS AND METHODS. In this prospective study, two PC MRI sequences were compared, one with parallel imaging acceleration and low spatial resolution (generalized autocalibrating partial parallel acquisition [GRAPPA]) and one with compressed sensing acceleration and high spatial resolution (sparse). Seventy-six patients were assessed, including 37 patients with cirrhosis. Two observers evaluated PC image quality. Quantitative analyses yielded a mean velocity, flow, and vessel area for the PV and HA and an arterial fraction. The PC techniques were compared using the paired Wilcoxon test and Bland-Altman statistics. The sensitivity of the flow parameters to the severity of cirrhosis was also assessed. RESULTS. Vessel delineation was significantly improved using the PC sparse sequence (p < 0.034). For both in vitro and in vivo measurements, PC sparse yielded lower estimates for vessel area and flow, and larger differences between PC GRAPPA and PC sparse were observed in the HA. PV velocity and flow were significantly lower in patients with cirrhosis on both PC sparse (p < 0.001 and p = 0.042, respectively) and PC GRAPPA (p < 0.001 and p = 0.005, respectively). PV velocity correlated negatively with Child-Pugh class (r =-0.50, p < 0.001), whereas the arterial fraction measured with PC sparse was higher in patients with Child-Pugh class B or C disease than in those with Child-Pugh class A disease, with a trend toward significance (p = 0.055). CONCLUSION. A high-spatial-resolution highly accelerated compressed sensing technique (PC sparse) allows total hepatic blood flow measurements obtained in 1 breath-hold, provides improved delineation of the hepatic vessels compared with a standard PC MRI sequence (GRAPPA), and can potentially be used for the noninvasive assessment of liver cirrhosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)510-518
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Cirrhosis
  • Hepatic artery flow
  • Phase-contrast MRI
  • Portal hypertension
  • Portal vein flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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