Diffusional kurtosis imaging (DKI) enables the characterization of non-Gaussian diffusion providing an additional diffusion parameter, the kurtosis (K), that may reflect microstructure heterogeneity. The DKI-IVIM model that incorporates DKI into the IVIM model has been investigated here to assess the feasibility and the potential utility of the DKI-IVIM model for both enhanced diffusion characterization and perfusion measurements in ischemic stroke.
Five stroke patients were enrolled. DKI-IVIM imaging was performed using 8 b-values from 0 to 1500 s/mm2 with a 4 minutes scan duration. IVIM pseudo-diffusion coefficient D*, perfusion fraction f, blood flow-related parameter fD* in addition to the diffusion parameters D (diffusion coefficient) and K were determined in the ischemic lesion and contralateral normal tissue for the stroke patients. Diffusion and perfusion parametric maps were reconstructed.
A significant decrease for D (p<0.0001) and increase for K (p=0.0002) in the lesion was observed. The perfusion fraction exhibited a significant decrease in the ischemic regions (p=0.005).
DKI-IVIM model enables for simultaneous cerebral perfusion and enhanced diffusion characterization in an acceptable clinically acquisition time that might improve ischemic stroke diagnosis.