Magnetization transfer (MT) imaging has been used to characterize tissues. A prospective analysis of magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) was performed on 107 patients with brain tumors, infection, and infarction to determine its efficacy in differential diagnosis. MTRs of brain tumor, infection, and infarction were significantly lower than those of normal gray and white matter. The cystic centers of infection had significantly higher MTRs than infarct and cystic tumors. The MTRs of infarction were significantly higher than those of cystic low-grade gliomas and benign tumors. The non-enhancing cystic components of infection, low-grade gliomas, and benign tumors were readily distinguished from solid infarction on enhanced images without MT. Using the MTR of 0.01 as a cutoff, the sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of MT imaging for distinguishing cystic infection from cystic tumors were 90.00%, 75.86%, and 79.49%, respectively. MT imaging may be valuable in differentiating cystic infection from cystic neoplasm. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2000;12:395-399.
Copyright 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.