MR neurography of the median nerve at 3.0 T: Optimization of diffusion tensor imaging and fiber tractography

Roman Guggenberger, Patrick Eppenberger, Daniel Markovic, Daniel Nanz, Avneesh Chhabra, Klaas P. Pruessmann, Gustav Andreisek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: The purpose of this study was to systematically assess the optimal b-value and reconstruction parameters for DTI and fiber tractography of the median nerve at 3.0 T. Methods: Local ethical board approved study with 45 healthy volunteers (15 men, 30 women; mean age, 41 ± 3.4 years) who underwent DTI of the right wrist at 3.0 T. A single-shot echo-planar-imaging sequence (TR/TE 10123/40 ms) was acquired at four different b-values (800, 1000, 1200, and 1400 s/mm 2). Two independent readers performed post processing and fiber-tractography. Fractional anisotropy (FA) maps were calculated. Fiber tracts of the median nerve were generated using four different algorithms containing different FA thresholds and different angulation tolerances. Data were evaluated quantitatively and qualitatively. Results: Tracking algorithms using a minimum FA threshold of 0.2 and a maximum angulation of 10° were significantly better than other algorithms. Fiber tractography generated significantly longer fibers in DTI acquisitions with higher b-values (1200 and 1400 s/mm 2 versus 800 s/mm 2; p < 0.001). The overall quality of fiber tractography was best at a b-value of 1200 s/mm 2 (p < 0.001). Conclusions: In conclusion, our results indicate use of b-values between 1000 and 1400 s/mm 2 for DTI of the median nerve at 3.0 T. Optimal reconstruction parameters for fiber tractography should encompass a minimum FA threshold of 0.2 and a maximum angulation tolerance of 10.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e775-e782
JournalEuropean Journal of Radiology
Volume81
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2012

Keywords

  • Diffusion tensor imaging
  • Fiber tractography
  • Median nerve
  • Peripheral nerve
  • Peripheral nervous system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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