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Abstract #1214

Non-Gaussian diffusion weighted imaging for assessing degenerative changes in intervertebral disc composition

Masaki Katsura 1,2 , Yuichi Suzuki 2 , Akihiro Kasahara 2 , Harushi Mori 1 , Akira Kunimatsu 1 , Yoshitaka Masutani 3 , Masaaki Hori 4 , Shigeki Aoki 4 , and Kuni Ohtomo 1

1 Radiology, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan, 2 Radiology, The University of Tokyo Hospital, Tokyo, Japan, 3 Intelligent Systems, Hiroshima City University, Hiroshima, Japan, 4 Radiology, School of Medicine, Juntendo University, Tokyo, Japan

In the present study, we performed q-space imaging (QSI) analyses for lumbar intervertebral discs (IVDs) with different stages of degeneration. Our results suggest that the degenerative process of IVDs involves narrowing of the space for free water movement and a generally higher degree of microstructural complexity, in which we are unable to assess with conventional quantitative MR measurements. QSI may provide sensitive biomarkers for IVD degenerative microstructural changes and can potentially become an appropriate tool to allow characterization of various IVD pathologies.

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