Emine Ulku Saritas1, Daeho Lee1, Ajit Shankaranarayanan2, Dwight G. Nishimura1
1Department of Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, United States; 2Applied Science Laboratory, GE Healthcare, Menlo Park, CA, United States
High in-plane resolution and the ability to acquire a large number of slices are essential for diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) of small structures, such as the spinal cord. Recently, a reduced-FOV method that uses 2D echo-planar RF excitation pulses to achieve high in-plane resolution was proposed. In this work, we present a Hadamard slice-encoding scheme to double the number of slices without any SNR or time penalty, with significant improvements to increase the SNR efficiency and reduce the inter-slice crosstalk. We validate our results with in vivo high-resolution axial DWI of the spinal cord.