How to correct susceptibility distortions in spin-echo echo-planar images: application to diffusion tensor imaging

Neuroimage. 2003 Oct;20(2):870-88. doi: 10.1016/S1053-8119(03)00336-7.


Diffusion tensor imaging is often performed by acquiring a series of diffusion-weighted spin-echo echo-planar images with different direction diffusion gradients. A problem of echo-planar images is the geometrical distortions that obtain near junctions between tissues of differing magnetic susceptibility. This results in distorted diffusion-tensor maps. To resolve this we suggest acquiring two images for each diffusion gradient; one with bottom-up and one with top-down traversal of k-space in the phase-encode direction. This achieves the simultaneous goals of providing information on the underlying displacement field and intensity maps with adequate spatial sampling density even in distorted areas. The resulting DT maps exhibit considerably higher geometric fidelity, as assessed by comparison to an image volume acquired using a conventional 3D MR technique.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Brain / anatomy & histology
  • Brain Mapping / methods
  • Echo-Planar Imaging / methods*
  • Echo-Planar Imaging / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Models, Statistical