Effect of inversion time on the precision of myocardial late gadolinium enhancement quantification evaluated with synthetic inversion recovery MR imaging

Eur Radiol. 2017 Aug;27(8):3235-3243. doi: 10.1007/s00330-016-4665-z. Epub 2017 Jan 3.


Objectives: To evaluate the influence of inversion time (TI) on the precision of myocardial late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) quantification using synthetic inversion recovery (IR) imaging in patients with myocardial infarction (MI).

Methods: Fifty-three patients with suspected prior MI underwent 1.5-T cardiac MRI with conventional magnitude (MagIR) and phase-sensitive IR (PSIR) LGE imaging and T1 mapping at 15 min post-contrast. T1-based synthetic MagIR and PSIR images were calculated with a TI ranging from -100 to +150 ms at 5-ms intervals relative to the optimal TI (TI0). LGE was quantified using a five standard deviation (5SD) and full width at half-maximum (FWHM) thresholds. Measurements were compared using one-way analysis of variance.

Results: The MagIRsy technique provided precise assessment of LGE area at TIs ≥ TI0, while precision was decreased below TI0. The LGE area showed significant differences at ≤ -25 ms compared to TI0 using 5SD (P < 0.001) and at ≤ -65 ms using the FWHM approach (P < 0.001). LGE measurements did not show significant difference over the analysed TI range in the PSIRsy images using either of the quantification methods.

Conclusions: T1 map-based PSIRsy images provide precise quantification of MI independent of TI at the investigated time point post-contrast. MagIRsy-based MI quantification is precise at TI0 and at longer TIs while showing decreased precision at TI values below TI0.

Key points: • Synthetic IR imaging retrospectively generates LGE images at any theoretical TI • Synthetic IR imaging can simulate the effect of TI on LGE quantification • Fifteen minutes post-contrast MagIR sy accurately quantifies infarcts from TI 0 to TI 0 + 150 ms • Fifteen minutes post-contrast PSIR sy provides precise infarct size independent of TI • Synthetic IR imaging has further advantages in reducing operator dependence.

Keywords: Cardiovascular magnetic resonance; Late gadolinium enhancement; Myocardial infarct; Synthetic inversion recovery; T1 mapping.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Contrast Media / administration & dosage*
  • Female
  • Gadolinium / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods*
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / diagnostic imaging*
  • Prospective Studies


  • Contrast Media
  • Gadolinium