Objectives: To evaluate the utility of BLADE fluid-attenuated inversion recovery images (FLAIR) magnetic resonance (MR) imaging compared to conventional FLAIR for the detection of arterial hyperintensity (AH) in hyperacute territorial infarction.
Methods: We retrospectively analysed MR images of patients with hyperacute (<6 h) territorial infarction over a 9-month study period. Special attention was paid to the presence or absence of AH in the frontal, parietal and temporal lobes and the number of AHs in the sylvian fissure. We also evaluated the presence of three kinds of artefacts on BLADE FLAIR and conventional FLAIR images.
Results: AH was seen in 41 (91%) patients with conventional FLAIR and 45 (100%) patients with BLADE FLAIR images. More instances of AH were detected in the frontal, parietal and temporal lobes and within the sylvian fissure using BLADE FLAIR. Motion artefacts, pulsation artefacts from the sigmoid sinus and incomplete cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) nulling that reduced image quality were observed more frequently on conventional FLAIR images than on BLADE FLAIR images.
Conclusions: BLADE FLAIR sequences are more sensitive than conventional FLAIR for the detection of AH in hyperacute territorial infarctions and provide better image quality by reducing artefacts. They may be used in place of conventional FLAIR for patients with hyperacute stroke.
Key points: Arterial hyperintensity is an important sign in patients with acute territorial infarctions. BLADE FLAIR sequences are sensitive for the detection of AH. BLADE FLAIR sequences provide better image quality by reducing artefacts.