Radio-frequency coils play a crucial role in the quest for optimal magnetic resonance (MR) image resolution. Given the growing variety of specialized coils available for neuroradiologic imaging applications, it is critical that radiologists use a coherent strategy for successfully matching these coils to specific imaging situations. First, fundamental concepts of coil design are reviewed. Subsequently, a coil-selection algorithm for neuroimaging applications is described. The algorithm uses the patient's clinical history to derive a region of interest, a desired spatial resolution, and a desired contrast resolution. These factors are then used to impose anatomic coverage and imaging protocol constraints on the set of available coils. Finally, coil selection is further refined according to patient tolerance factors. The following coils are considered for use with a 1.5-T superconducting MR imager; namely, quadrature birdcage head, neurovascular phased-array, and dual single-circular-element coils, as well as investigational coils that have not yet been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration: reduced-volume birdcage end-cap, temporal lobe phased-array, carotid artery phased-array, coils. Rationales are discussed regarding appropriate coil selection for screening whole brain and imaging brainstem, cranial nerves, orbits, cerebral cortex, mesial temporal lobes, and internal auditory canal, and for MR angiography.
- Brain, MR, 10.12141, 10.12142
- Magnetic resonance (MR), coils
- Magnetic resonance (MR), technology
- Radiology and radiologists, How I do it
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging