A dual-echo pulse sequence for simultaneous acquisition of MR angiography and venography (MRAV) is developed. Data acquisition of the second echo for susceptibility-weighted imaging-based MR venography is added to the conventional three-dimensional (3D) time-of-flight (TOF) MRA pulse sequence. Using this dual-echo acquisition approach, the venography data can be acquired without increasing the repetition time, and, therefore, the scan duration of routine TOF MRA scans is maintained. The feasibility of simultaneous acquisition of MRAV is presented in brain scans at different spatial resolutions. The effect of spatial resolution on vein-to-background contrast is also demonstrated. Venous contrast is improved in high-resolution (0.52 x 0.52 x 1.6 mm(3)) images compared to that in standard-resolution (0.78 x 0.78 x 1.6 mm(3)) images. This MRAV technique enables the acquisition of MR venography without the need of an extra scan or injection of contrast agent in routine clinical brain exams at 3T.
(c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.