Patient-specific requirements and clinical validation of MRI-based pressure mapping: A two-center study in patients with aortic coarctation

J Magn Reson Imaging. 2019 Jan;49(1):81-89. doi: 10.1002/jmri.26230. Epub 2018 Nov 3.


Background: Invasive peak-to-peak pressure gradients are the current clinical reference standard for assessing aortic coarctation. To obtain them, patients need to undergo arterial heart catheterization. Unless an intervention is performed, the procedure remains purely diagnostic, while the concomitant risks remain.

Purpose: To validate MRI-based pressure mapping against pressure drop derived from heart catheterization and to define minimal clinical requirements.

Study type: Prospective clinical validation study.

Population: Twenty-seven coarctation patients with an indicated heart catheterization were enrolled at two clinical centers.

Mri sequences: 1.5T including 4D velocity-encoded MRI and 3D anatomical imaging of the aorta.

Assessment: Pressure drop across the stenosis was calculated by pressure mapping based on the pressure Poisson equation. Calculated pressure drops were compared with catheter measured data. Spatial and temporal resolution were analyzed using in silico phantom-based data as well as in vivo measurements.

Statistics: Pressure drop was compared to peak-to-peak measurements. A two-sample paired mean equivalence test was used.

Results: In patients without imaging artifacts and a required spatial resolution ≥5 voxel/diameter, significant equivalence of pressure mapping compared to heart catheterization was found (17.5 ± 6.49 vs. 16.6 ± 6.53 mmHg, P < 0.001).

Data conclusion: Pressure mapping provides equivalent accuracy to pressure drop obtained from heart catheterization in patients 1) without previous stenting and 2) with sufficient spatial image resolution (at least 5 voxels/diameter). In these patients the method can reliably be performed prior to the actual procedure, and thus allows safe noninvasive treatment planning based on MRI.

Level of evidence: 2 Technical Efficacy: Stage 3 J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2019;49:81-89.

Keywords: 4D VEC MRI; aortic coarctation; catheterization; congenital heart disease; image-based cardiovascular modeling; noninvasive diagnostics.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aortic Coarctation / diagnostic imaging*
  • Artifacts
  • Cardiac Catheterization
  • Catheters
  • Child
  • Female
  • Heart / diagnostic imaging*
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Poisson Distribution
  • Pressure
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk
  • Young Adult