Intracranial Vessel Wall Imaging With Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Current Techniques and Applications

World Neurosurg. 2018 Apr;112:186-198. doi: 10.1016/j.wneu.2018.01.083. Epub 2018 Jan 31.


Vessel wall magnetic resonance imaging (VW-MRI) is a modern imaging technique with expanding applications in the characterization of intracranial vessel wall pathology. VW-MRI provides added diagnostic capacity compared with conventional luminal imaging methods. This review explores the principles of VW-MRI and typical imaging features of various vessel wall pathologies, such as atherosclerosis, dissection, and vasculitis. Radiologists should be familiar with this important imaging technique, given its increasing use and future relevance to everyday practice.

Keywords: High resolution; Intracranial; Magnetic resonance imaging; Vessel wall.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Atherosclerosis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Brain / blood supply
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Arteries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Veins / diagnostic imaging*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / methods
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Vasculitis / diagnostic imaging*