Bertine L. Stehouwer1, Hendrik de Leeuw2, Peter R. Seevinck2, Fredy Visser1, 3, Peter R. Luijten1, Dennis W.J. Klomp1, Paul J. van Diest4, Chris J.G. Bakker2, Wouter B. Veldhuis1
1Radiology, University Medical Center, Utrecht, Netherlands; 2Image Sciences Institute, University Medical Center, Utrecht, Netherlands; 3Philips Healthcare, Best, Netherlands; 4Pathology, University Medical Center, Utrecht, Netherlands
We investigated the ability of high-field MRI to detect breast micro-calcifications in a phantom and ex-vivo set-up by exploiting susceptibility differences between calcifications and glandular tissue. Magnitude images depicted several field disturbances, but were clearly distorted by B1-inhomogeneities and, moreover, did not allow characterization of the field inhomogeneities. Phase derivative images were not hampered by B1-inhomogeneities and showed a high sensitivity for detecting the characteristic six-lobed blooming pattern which is seen in case of calcifications. The calcifications were confirmed by CT and mammography, respectively. This study shows the feasibility of the detection of breast micro-calcifications using high-field MRI.