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Abstract #1870

Inflow-Sensitive Inversion Recovery SSFP Imaging of the Carotid Arteries: A Potential Strategy for Noncontrast MRA of the Neck

Phillip Young1, Mohammad-Mehdi Khalighi2, Anja Brau, Naoyuki Takei3, Wei Sun4, Robert Herfkens5

1Radiology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA; 2Applied Science Laboratory West, GE Healthcare, Menlo Park, CA, USA; 3Applied Science Laboratory Japan, GE Healthcare, Tokyo, Japan; 4MR Engineering, GE Healthcare, Waukesha, WI, USA; 5Radiology, Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA, USA

We describe our initial experience with inversion-prepared balanced SSFP imaging of the carotid and vertebral arteries in 9 healthy volunteers. While the extent of coverage achieved was not sufficient to image from the aortic arch to the skull base in a single acquisition, the images provided excellent visualization of the carotid and vertebral arteries and their branches. In all but one patient, 6 or 7 of the usual 8 branches of the external carotid arteries were seen for at least 2 cm. Further work is needed to assess utility of the sequence in clinical patients, particularly in comparison to currently used methods.