Objectives: Our objectives involved identifying whether repeated averaging in basal and mid left ventricular myocardial levels improves precision and correlation with collagen volume fraction for 11 heartbeat MOLLI T 1 mapping versus assessment at a single ventricular level.
Materials and methods: For assessment of T 1 mapping precision, a cohort of 15 healthy volunteers underwent two CMR scans on separate days using an 11 heartbeat MOLLI with a 5(3)3 beat scheme to measure native T 1 and a 4(1)3(1)2 beat post-contrast scheme to measure post-contrast T 1, allowing calculation of partition coefficient and ECV. To assess correlation of T 1 mapping with collagen volume fraction, a separate cohort of ten aortic stenosis patients scheduled to undergo surgery underwent one CMR scan with this 11 heartbeat MOLLI scheme, followed by intraoperative tru-cut myocardial biopsy. Six models of myocardial diffuse fibrosis assessment were established with incremental inclusion of imaging by averaging of the basal and mid-myocardial left ventricular levels, and each model was assessed for precision and correlation with collagen volume fraction.
Results: A model using 11 heart beat MOLLI imaging of two basal and two mid ventricular level averaged T 1 maps provided improved precision (Intraclass correlation 0.93 vs 0.84) and correlation with histology (R 2 = 0.83 vs 0.36) for diffuse fibrosis compared to a single mid-ventricular level alone. ECV was more precise and correlated better than native T 1 mapping.
Conclusion: T 1 mapping sequences with repeated averaging could be considered for applications of 11 heartbeat MOLLI, especially when small changes in native T 1/ECV might affect clinical management.
Keywords: Correlation with collagen volume fraction; Extracellular volume; Gadolinium; MOLLI; Precision; T 1 mapping.