Magnetic resonance (MR) angiography has undergone significant development over the past decade. It has gone from being a novelty application of MR with limited clinical use to replacing catheter angiography in some clinical applications. One of the principal limitations inherent to all MR angiographic techniques is that they remain signal limited when pushed to the limits of higher resolution and short acquisition time. Developments in magnetic gradient hardware, coil design, and pulse sequences now are well optimized for MR angiography obtained at 1.5-T main magnetic field (B-field) strength, with acquisition times and imaging matrix size near their optimal limits, respectively. Recently, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved use of clinical magnetic resonance imaging with main magnetic field strengths of up to 4 T. Before FDA approval, use of MR with magnetic field strengths much greater than 1.5 T was essentially reserved for investigational or research applications. The main advantage of high B-field imaging is a significant improvement in the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), which increases in an approximately linear fashion with field strength in the range of 1.5 to 3.0 T. This increased SNR is directly available when performing MR angiographic acquisitions at higher magnetic field strengths, allowing for better resolution and conspicuity of vessels with similar acquisition times. Little has been reported on the benefits of performing MR angiography at magnetic field strengths >1.5 T. The purpose of this article is to summarize our current experience with intracranial and cervical MR angiographic techniques at 3.0 T.
- 3.0 Tesla
- Magnetic resonance angiography
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging