Fast bilateral breast coverage with high spectral and spatial resolution (HiSS) MRI at 3T

J Magn Reson Imaging. 2017 Nov;46(5):1341-1348. doi: 10.1002/jmri.25658. Epub 2017 Mar 6.


Purpose: To develop and assess a full-coverage, sensitivity encoding (SENSE)-accelerated breast high spatial and spectral resolution (HiSS) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) within clinically reasonable times as a potential nonenhanced MRI protocol for breast density measurement or breast cancer screening.

Materials and methods: Sixteen women with biopsy-proven cancer or suspicious lesions, and 13 women who were healthy volunteers or were screened for breast cancer, received 3T breast MRI exams, including SENSE-accelerated HiSS MRI, which was implemented as a submillimeter spatial resolution echo-planar spectroscopic imaging (EPSI) sequence. In postprocessing, fat and water resonance peak height and integral images were generated from EPSI data. The postprocessing software was custom-designed, and new algorithms were developed to enable processing of whole-coverage axial HiSS datasets. Water peak height HiSS images were compared to pre- and postcontrast T1 -weighted images. Fat suppression was quantified as parenchymal-to-suppressed-fat signal ratio in HiSS water peak height and nonenhanced T1 -weighted images, and artifact levels were scored.

Results: Approximately a 4-fold decrease in acquisition speed, with a concurrent 2.5-fold decrease in voxel size, was achieved, with low artifact levels, and with spectral signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 45:1. Fat suppression was 1.9 times more effective (P < 0.001) in HiSS images than in T1 -weighted images (SPAIR), and HiSS images showed higher SNR in the axilla. HiSS MRI visualized 10 of 13 malignant lesions identified on dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE)-MRI, and did not require skin removal in postprocessing to generate maximum intensity projection images.

Conclusion: We demonstrate full-coverage, SENSE-accelerated breast HiSS MRI within clinically reasonable times, as a potential protocol for breast density measurement or breast cancer screening.

Level of evidence: 2 Technical Efficacy: Stage 1 J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2017;46:1341-1348.

Keywords: SENSE acceleration; breast cancer screening and diagnosis; breast density measurement; echo planar spectroscopic imaging (EPSI); high spatial and spectral resolution (HiSS) MRI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Algorithms
  • Biopsy
  • Breast / diagnostic imaging*
  • Breast Density
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Contrast Media
  • Echo-Planar Imaging
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Signal-To-Noise Ratio
  • Software


  • Contrast Media