The use of magnetic resonance (MR) imaging is growing exponentially, in part because of the excellent anatomic and pathologic detail provided by the modality and because of recent technologic advances that have led to faster acquisition times. Radiology residents now are introduced in their 1st year of training to the MR pulse sequences routinely used in clinical imaging, including various spin-echo, gradient-echo, inversion-recovery, echo-planar imaging, and MR angiographic sequences. However, to make optimal use of these techniques, radiologists also need a basic knowledge of the physics of MR imaging, including T1 recovery, T2 and T2* decay, repetition time, echo time, and chemical shift effects. In addition, an understanding of contrast weighting is very helpful to obtain better depiction of specific tissues for the diagnosis of various pathologic processes.
(c) RSNA, 2006.