Longitudinal Monitoring of Hepatic Blood Flow before and after TIPS by Using 4D-Flow MR Imaging

Radiology. 2016 Nov;281(2):574-582. doi: 10.1148/radiol.2016152247. Epub 2016 May 12.


Purpose To demonstrate the feasibility of four-dimensional (4D)-flow magnetic resonance (MR) imaging for noninvasive longitudinal hemodynamic monitoring of hepatic blood flow before and after transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) placement. Materials and Methods The institutional review board approved this prospective Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliant study with written informed consent. Four-dimensional-flow MR imaging was performed in seven patients with portal hypertension and refractory ascites before and 2 and 12 weeks after TIPS placement by using a time-resolved three-dimensional radial phase-contrast acquisition. Flow and peak velocity measurements were obtained in the superior mesenteric vein (SMV), splenic vein (SV), portal vein (PV), and the TIPS. Flow volumes and peak velocities in each vessel, as well as the ratio of in-stent to PV flow, were compared before and after TIPS placement by using analysis of variance. Results Flow volumes significantly increased in the SMV (0.24 L/min; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.07, 0.41), SV (0.31 L/min; 95% CI: 0.07, 0.54), and PV (0.88 L/min; 95% CI: 0.06, 1.70) after TIPS placement (all P < .05), with no significant difference between the first and second post-TIPS placement acquisitions (all P > .11). Ascites resolved in six of seven patients. In those with resolved ascites, the TIPS-to-PV flow ratio was 0.8 ± 0.2 and 0.9 ± 0.2 at the two post-TIPS time points, respectively, while the observed ratios were 4.6 and 4.3 in the patient with refractory ascites at the two post-TIPS time points, respectively. In this patient, 4D-flow MR imaging demonstrated arterio-portal-venous shunting, with draining into the TIPS. Conclusion Four-dimensional-flow MR imaging is feasible for noninvasive longitudinal hemodynamic monitoring of hepatic blood flow before and after TIPS placement. © RSNA, 2016 Online supplemental material is available for this article.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ascites / diagnostic imaging*
  • Ascites / physiopathology
  • Ascites / therapy*
  • Blood Flow Velocity / physiology
  • Contrast Media
  • Female
  • Gadolinium
  • Hemodynamics / physiology
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Portal / diagnostic imaging*
  • Hypertension, Portal / physiopathology
  • Hypertension, Portal / therapy*
  • Liver Circulation / physiology*
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Portasystemic Shunt, Transjugular Intrahepatic*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Stents


  • Contrast Media
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Gadolinium
  • gadofosveset trisodium