1Medical Physics, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Sheffield, United Kingdom, 2Academic Unit of reproductive and developmental medicine, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, United Kingdom
A balanced steady-state free
precession (bSSFP) sequence gives excellent fluid/tissue contrast and allows
rapid repeat acquisition of a single slice, resulting in a cine image dataset.
We evaluate the bSSFP sequence to image fetal swallowing action and passage of fluid
in the esophagus and airway in 7 human fetuses.
Regurgitation of amniotic fluid is observed where major or total obstruction is
present. Optimised bSSFP sequences are demonstrated at 1.5T and 3.0T and can be
used in assessment of obstruction and swallowing in a wide variety of cases
including esophageal atresia, neck masses, CHAOS and cleft palate.