Olaf Dietrich1, Andreas Biffar1, Andrea Baur-Melnyk, Gerwin Schmidt, Maximilian F. Reiser1
Laboratory for Biomedical Imaging, Department of Clinical Radiology,
Diffusion-weighted steady-state free-precession (DW-SSFP) sequences are extremely valuable for the differential diagnosis of benign osteoporotic and malignant neoplastic vertebral compression fractures. The purpose of the present study was to provide a detailed theoretical and experimental analysis of the DW-SSFP signal in the spine. It could be demonstrated that the main reasons for the different lesion contrasts are an opposed-phase readout in combination with the differing fat fractions and T2*-values in the fractures as well as in normal-appearing VBM of both entities. The observed signal contrast is therefore rather fat- and T2*-weighted than diffusion-weighted.