Five venous thrombi were induced in the external jugular veins of three laboratory dogs, and were repeatedly imaged over 3 weeks using a 0.35-T magnetic resonance (MR) imager. MR magnitude and phase images, T1 and T2 relaxation times, venography, and histologic sections of these thrombi were evaluated to determine the changes in appearance on MR images with time. Venous thrombi appeared hyperintense compared with muscle on both relatively T1- and T2-weighted spin-echo sequences regardless of the age of the clot. Organization of the thrombus beyond 1 week was manifested as increased prominence of flow signal void in and around the clot. Distinction between intraluminal thrombus and flow-related artifacts was aided by phase image reconstruction. Nineteen venous thrombi locations in 13 patients revealed an MR appearance similar to that of the experimental animal model. Three patients (six thrombi locations) had serial examinations over 4 weeks. No significant change in thrombus signal characteristics was noted with time. It is concluded that MR imaging at 0.35 T cannot be used to predict the age of thrombus (up to 3 weeks) but may be helpful in following its resolution.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging