Time-resolved 3D contrast-enhanced MRA with GRAPPA on a 1.5-T system for imaging of craniocervical vascular disease: initial experience

Neuroradiology. 2006 May;48(5):291-9. doi: 10.1007/s00234-006-0052-9. Epub 2006 Mar 11.


Introduction: For three-dimensional (3D) imaging with magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) of the cerebral and cervical circulation, both a high temporal and a high spatial resolution with isovolumetric datasets are of interest. In an initial evaluation, we analyzed the potential of contrast-enhanced (CE) time-resolved 3D-MRA as an adjunct for neurovascular MR imaging.

Methods: In ten patients with various cerebrovascular disorders and vascularized tumors in the cervical circulation, high-speed MR acquisition using parallel imaging with the GeneRalized Autocalibrating Partially Parallel Acquisitions (GRAPPA) algorithm on a 1.5-T system with a temporal resolution of 1.5 s per dataset and a nearly isovolumetric spatial resolution was applied. The results were assessed and compared with those from conventional MRA and digital subtraction angiography (DSA).

Results: CE time-resolved 3D-MRA enabled the visualization and characterization of high-flow arteriovenous shunts in cases of vascular malformations or hypervascularized tumors. In steno-occlusive disease, the method provided valuable additional information about altered vessel perfusion compared to standard MRA techniques such as time-of-flight (TOF) MRA. The use of a nearly isovolumetric voxel size allowed a free-form interrogation of 3D datasets. Its comparatively low spatial resolution was found to be the major limitation.

Conclusion: In this preliminary analysis, CE time-resolved 3D-MRA was revealed to be a promising complementary MRA sequence that enabled the visualization of contrast flow dynamics in various types of neurovascular disorders and vascularized cervical tumors.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Algorithms
  • Angiography, Digital Subtraction
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / diagnostic imaging
  • Contrast Media
  • Female
  • Heterocyclic Compounds
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional*
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organometallic Compounds


  • Contrast Media
  • Heterocyclic Compounds
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • gadolinium 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-N,N',N'',N'''-tetraacetate