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Fast generation of T2* maps in the entire range of clinical interest: application to thalassemia major patients

Positano, Vincenzo and Meloni, Antonella and Santarelli, Maria Filomena and Gerardi, Calogera and Bitti, Pier Paolo and Cirotto, Carla and De Marchi, Daniele and Salvatori, Cristina and Landini, Luigi and Pepe, Alessia (2015) Fast generation of T2* maps in the entire range of clinical interest: application to thalassemia major patients. Computers in Biology and Medicine, Vol. 56 , p. 200-210. ISSN 0010-4825. eISSN 1879-0534. Article.

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DOI: 10.1016/j.compbiomed.2014.10.020

Abstract

T2* maps obtained by the processing of multiecho MR sequences can be useful in several clinical applications. T2* map generation procedures should join a processing time compatible with on-line image analysis with a good precision in the entire T2* range of clinical interest. Fast generation of T2* maps can be achieved by the estimation of the T2* values by the weighted linear fitting of the logarithm of the signal (WLSL) method. This approach fails if the signal decay diverges from a pure exponential decay, as happens at low T2* values where the rapid decay in the signal intensity leads to a plateau in the later echo times (TE). The proposed method implements the automatic truncation of the signal decay curves to be fitted in order to compensate for the signal collapse at low T2* values, allowing the extension of the WLSL method through the entire clinical range of T2* values.
Validation was performed on synthetic images and on 60 thalassemia major patients with different levels of myocardial iron overload. Phantom experiments showed that a 5% fitting error threshold represented the best compromise between T2* value measurement precision and processing time. A good agreement was found between T2* map pixel-wise measurements and ROI-based measurements performed by expert readers (CoV=1.84% in global heart T2*, CoV=5.8% in segmental analysis). In conclusion, the developed procedure was effective in generating correct T2* maps for the entire T2* clinical range.

Item Type:Article
ID Code:10650
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords:T2* mapping, Iron overload, relaxometry, magnetic resonance imaging, thalassemia
Divisions:002 Altri enti e centri di ricerca del Nord Sardegna > Azienda ASL1, Sassari
002 Altri enti e centri di ricerca del Nord Sardegna > Azienda ASL3, Nuoro > Ospedale "San Francesco"
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0010-4825
eISSN:1879-0534
Deposited On:20 Jan 2015 10:35

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