Pediatric brain MRI part 1: basic techniques

Pediatr Radiol. 2017 May;47(5):534-543. doi: 10.1007/s00247-016-3776-7. Epub 2017 Apr 13.


Pediatric neuroimaging is a complex and specialized field that uses magnetic resonance (MR) imaging as the workhorse for diagnosis. Standard MR techniques used in adult neuroimaging are suboptimal for imaging in pediatrics because there are significant differences in the child's developing brain. These differences include size, myelination and sulcation. MR protocols need to be tailored to the specific indication and reviewed by the supervising radiologist in real time, and the specialized needs of this population require careful consideration of issues such as scan timing, sequence order, sedation, anesthesia and gadolinium administration. In part 1 of this review, we focus on basic protocol development and anatomical characterization. We provide multiple imaging examples optimized for evaluation of supratentorial and infratentorial brain, midline structures, head and neck, and intracranial vasculature.

Keywords: Anesthesia; Brain; Children; Gadolinium; Magnetic resonance imaging; Protocols; Sedation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Neuroimaging / methods*