Imaging of diffusion and microcirculation with gradient sensitization: design, strategy, and significance

J Magn Reson Imaging. 1991 Jan-Feb;1(1):7-28. doi: 10.1002/jmri.1880010103.


Recent developments in the use of magnetic resonance (MR) to measure and image diffusion and blood microcirculation ("perfusion") are summarized. After a brief description of the effects of diffusion and perfusion on the MR signal, the different methods (conventional spin-echo, stimulated-echo, gradient-echo, and echo-planar imaging) that have been proposed and used to image and measure diffusion and perfusion by gradient sensitization are presented, along with their advantages and limitations. The difficulties of diffusion/perfusion imaging related to both hardware and software are then discussed. Special attention is given to specific problems encountered with in vivo studies and data analysis. Finally, the potential biologic and clinical applications are outlined, and some examples are presented.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain / anatomy & histology
  • Brain / pathology
  • Diffusion*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / instrumentation
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Microcirculation*
  • Research Design