Objectives: To evaluate lung T2 mapping for quantitative characterization and differentiation of ground-glass opacity (GGO), reticulation (RE) and honeycombing (HC) in usual interstitial pneumonia (UIP) and non-specific interstitial pneumonia (NSIP).
Methods: Twelve patients with stable UIP or NSIP underwent thin-section multislice CT and 1.5-T MRI of the lung. A total of 188 regions were classified at CT into normal (n = 29) and pathological areas, including GGO (n = 48), RE (n = 60) and HC (n = 51) predominant lesions. Entire lung T2 maps based on multi-echo single shot TSE sequence (TE: 20, 40, 79, 140, 179 ms) were generated from each subject with breath-holds at end-expiration and ECG-triggering.
Results: The median T2 relaxation of GGO was 67 ms (range 60-72 ms). RE predominant lesions had a median relaxation of 74 ms (range 69-79 ms), while for HC pattern this was 79 ms (range 74-89 ms). The median T2 relaxation for normal lung areas was 41 ms (ranged 38-49 ms), and showed significant difference to pathological areas (p < 0.001). A statistical difference was found between the T2 relaxation of GGO, RE and HC (p < 0.05).
Conclusions: The proposed method provides quantitative information for pattern differentiation, potentially allowing for monitoring of progression and response to treatment, in interstitial lung disease.
Key points: • Multi-echo single shot TSE sequence allows for entire lung T2 mapping. • Lung remodelling patterns in ILD show different T2 relaxation. • Quantitative T2 mapping may provide information for monitoring of ILD.
Keywords: Interstitial lung diseases; Magnetic resonance imaging; Multislice computed tomography; Pulmonary fibrosis; Quantitative evaluation.