Spinal diffusion tensor imaging: a comprehensive review with emphasis on spinal cord anatomy and clinical applications

Clin Anat. 2015 Jan;28(1):88-95. doi: 10.1002/ca.22349. Epub 2014 Feb 4.


Magnetic resonance imaging technology allows for in vivo visualization of fiber tracts of the central nervous system using diffusion-weighted imaging sequences and data processing referred to as "diffusion tensor imaging" and "diffusion tensor tractography." While protocols for high-fidelity diffusion tensor imaging of the brain are well established, the spinal cord has proven a more difficult target for diffusion tensor methods. Here, we review the current literature on spinal diffusion tensor imaging and tractography with special emphasis on neuroanatomical correlations and clinical applications.

Keywords: anatomy; diffusion tensor tractography; spinal cord.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diffusion Tensor Imaging / methods*
  • Humans
  • Spinal Cord / anatomy & histology*
  • Spinal Cord Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / diagnosis*