April M. Chow1, Victor Ai2, Polly SY Cheung3, Siu Ki Yu1, Gladys G. Lo2
1Medical Physics & Research Department, Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital, Happy Valley, Hong Kong SAR, China; 2Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital, Happy Valley, Hong Kong SAR, China; 3Breast Care Center, Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital, Happy Valley, Hong Kong SAR, China
Diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) characterizes the random microscopic motion of molecules and enables assessment of tissue microstructure. This technique has been widely used to characterize malignant and benign breast lesions; however, most studies only involve implementation of monoexponential model which assumes free and unrestricted water diffusion. In this study, using intravoxel incoherent motion (IVIM) biexponential analysis, we showed that both molecular water diffusion and blood microcirculation contribute to the alteration in apparent diffusion changes in malignant breast lesions at 3 T. With the capability to quantify the diffusion and perfusion effects separately, IVIM analysis may be valuable for characterizing in malignant breast lesions in vivo non-invasively without the use of contrast agents.