Navigator-gated free-breathing three-dimensional balanced fast field echo (trueFISP) coronary magnetic resonance angiography

Elmar Spuentrup, Peter Börnert, René M. Botnar, Jan P. Groen, Warren J. Manning, Matthias Stuber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

87 Scopus citations


RATIONALE AND OBJECTIVES. Recent developments of MR imaging equipment enabled high-quality steady state-free-precession (Balanced FFE, True-FISP) MR-imaging with a substantial 'T2 like' contrast, resulting in a high signal intensity of the blood-pool without the application of exogenous contrast agents. It is hypothesized that Balanced-FFE may be valuable for contrast enhancement in 3D free-breathing coronary MRA. MATERIALS AND METHODS. Navigator-gated free-breathing cardiac triggered coronary MRA was performed in 10 healthy adult subjects and three patients with radiograph defined coronary artery disease using a segmented k-space 3D Balanced FFE imaging sequence. RESULTS. High contrast-to-noise ratio between the blood-pool and the myocardium (29 ± 8) and long segment visualization of both coronary arteries could be obtained in about 5 minutes during free breathing using the present navigator-gated Balanced-FFE coronary MRA approach. First patient results demonstrated successful display of coronary artery stenoses. CONCLUSION. Balanced FFE offers a potential alternative for endogenous contrast enhancement in navigator-gated free-breathing 3D coronary MRA. The obtained results together with the relatively short scanning time warrant further studies in larger patient collectives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)637-642
Number of pages6
JournalInvestigative radiology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Coronary vessels
  • Heart
  • Magnetic resonance (MR)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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