Swallowing, arterial pulsation, and breathing induce motion artifacts in carotid artery MRI

Loic Boussel, Gwenael Herigault, Alejandro De La Vega, Michel Nonent, Philippe Charles Douek, Jean Michel Serfaty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Purpose: To identify and quantify the potential sources of motion in carotid artery imaging. Materials and Methods: Two healthy volunteers and 12 patients (20-75 years old) with atherosclerotic disease were scanned on a Philips Intera 1.5T system. A single-shot balanced-fast field echo (bFFE) sequence was used to acquire real-time axial views of the carotid artery wall (three images per second). A three-step acquisition protocol was performed to analyze the three types of motion (arterial pulsation, breathing, and swallowing) separately. The isocenter carotid artery motion amplitude in either the x or y direction was measured. Radial variation in the carotid lumen between the systolic and diastolic phases was analyzed. Motion frequency was reported for each patient. Results: Significant motion related to arterial pulsation (amplitude = 0.27-0.93 mm, mean = 0.6, SD = 0.19), breathing (amplitude = 0.5-3.6 mm, mean = 1.56, SD = 0.99)), and swallowing (amplitude = 1.4-9.2 mm, mean = 4.7, SD = 2.4) were visualized. Conclusion: Pulsation, breathing, and swallowing are sources of significant motion in the carotid artery wall. Such motion should be considered in the future to improve carotid artery image quality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)413-415
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Atherosclerosis
  • Atherosclerotic plaque
  • Carotid motion
  • Carotid stenosis
  • Magnetic resonance angiography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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