Cardiac cine MRI: comparison of 1.5 T, non-enhanced 3.0 T and blood pool enhanced 3.0 T imaging

Eur J Radiol. 2008 Jan;65(1):80-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ejrad.2007.11.004. Epub 2007 Dec 26.


Introduction: Cardiac cine imaging using balanced steady state free precession sequences (bSSFP) suffers from artefacts at 3.0 T. We compared bSSFP cardiac cine imaging at 1.5 T with gradient echo imaging at 3.0 T with and without a blood pool contrast agent.

Materials and methods: Eleven patients referred for cardiac cine imaging underwent imaging at 1.5 T and 3.0 T. At 3.0 T images were acquired before and after administration of 0.03 mmol/kg gadofosveset. Blood pool signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), temporal variations in SNR, ejection fraction and myocardial mass were compared. Subjective image quality was scored on a four-point scale.

Results: Blood pool SNR increased with more than 75% at 3.0 T compared to 1.5 T (p<0.001); after contrast administration at 3.0 T SNR increased with 139% (p<0.001). However, variations in blood pool SNR at 3.0 T were nearly three times as high versus those at 1.5 T in the absence of contrast medium (p<0.001); after contrast administration this was reduced to approximately a factor 1.4 (p=0.21). Saturation artefacts led to significant overestimation of ejection fraction in the absence of contrast administration (1.5 T: 44.7+/-3.1 vs. 3.0 T: 50.7+/-4.2 [p=0.04] vs. 3.0 T post contrast: 43.4+/-2.9 [p=0.55]). Subjective image quality was highest for 1.5 T (2.8+/-0.3), and lowest for non-enhanced 3.0 T (1.7+/-0.6; p=0.006).

Conclusions: GRE cardiac cine imaging at 3.0 T after injection of the blood pool agent gadofosveset leads to improved objective and subjective cardiac cine image quality at 3.0 T and to the same conclusions regarding cardiac ejection fraction compared to bSSFP imaging at 1.5 T.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Contrast Media
  • Gadolinium
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Statistics, Nonparametric


  • Contrast Media
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Gadolinium
  • gadofosveset trisodium