Diffusion-weighted MR imaging of encephalitis

AJR Am J Roentgenol. 1999 Oct;173(4):1097-9. doi: 10.2214/ajr.173.4.10511186.


Objective: Our purpose was to evaluate how well diffusion-weighted MR imaging shows viral or bacterial encephalitis in comparison with conventional MR imaging that includes T1- and T2-weighted spin-echo and fluid-attenuated inversion-recovery sequences.

Conclusion: In nine of the 13 patients examined, diffusion-weighted imaging was superior to other diagnostic imaging sequences (fluid-attenuated inversion-recovery sequences in eight patients and a T2-weighted spin-echo sequence in one patient). Diffusion-weighted imaging can serve as a method of detecting early encephalitic changes.

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Infections / pathology*
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Encephalitis / pathology*
  • Encephalitis, Viral / pathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies