Evaluation of the supraaortic arteries using non-contrast-enhanced Velocity MR angiography "Inhance"

Neuroradiology. 2012 Nov;54(11):1215-9. doi: 10.1007/s00234-012-1038-4. Epub 2012 May 9.


Introduction: The aim of this study was to compare the recently developed phase contrast-based Inhance 3D Velocity magnetic resonance angiography technique (Inhance) to the contrast-enhanced standard method (CE-MRA) in the evaluation of the supraaortic arteries.

Methods: Inhance and CE-MRA were performed in ten consecutive patients with a suspected pathology of the supraaortic arteries on a 3-T MR scanner. Two neuroradiologists evaluated in consensus both sequences regarding the visualisation of the supraaortic arteries and their segments on a five-point score. Diagnostic certainty regarding the overall presence of a vascular pathology was rated on the same five-point score.

Results: On CE-MRA as well as on Inhance, a vascular pathology of the supraaortic arteries was detected in seven patients. There was no statistically significant difference in the overall diagnostic certainty regarding the presence or absence of pathologic findings for CE-MRA compared to Inhance. Furthermore, no statistically significant difference was found with regard to visualisation of the distal cervical and intracranial arterial segments, while CE-MRA was superior to Inhance in the visualisation of the origins of the cervical vessels from the aortic arch.

Conclusion: Non-contrast Inhance proved useful in the evaluation of the supraaortic arteries with limited assessment of the proximal supraaortic branches. Hence, this technique features a valuable alternative to CE-MRA in the visualisation of the supraaortic arteries, particularly in patients with renal insufficiency.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Carotid Arteries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Arteries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Radiography
  • Vertebral Artery / diagnostic imaging*