Purpose: To evaluate the feasibility and reproducibility of renal magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) in young healthy volunteers.
Materials and methods: Ten volunteers underwent renal MRE twice at a 4-5 week interval. The vibrations (45 and 76 Hz) were generated by a speaker positioned beneath the volunteers' back and centered on their left kidney. For each frequency, three sagittal slices were acquired (eight phase offsets per cycle, motion-encoding gradients successively positioned along the three directions of space). Shear velocity images were reconstructed using the curl operator combined with the local frequency estimation (LFE) algorithm.
Results: The mean shear velocities measured in the renal parenchyma during the two examinations were not significantly different and exhibited a mean variation of 6% at 45 Hz and 76 Hz. The mean shear velocities in renal parenchyma were 2.21 ± 0.14 m/s at 45 Hz (shear modulus of 4.9 ± 0.5 kPa) and 3.07 ± 0.17 m/s at 76 Hz (9.4 ± 0.8 kPa, P < 0.01). The mean shear velocities in the renal cortex and medulla were respectively 2.19 ± 0.13 m/s and 2.32 ± 0.16 m/s at 45 Hz (P = 0.002) and 3.06 ± 0.16 m/s and 3.10 ± 0.22 m/s at 76 Hz (P = 0.13).
Conclusion: Renal MRE was feasible and reproducible. Two independent measurements of shear velocities in the renal parenchyma of the same subjects showed an average variability of 6%.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.