Multiple sclerosis: serial study of gadolinium-enhanced MR imaging

Radiology. 1988 Oct;169(1):117-22. doi: 10.1148/radiology.169.1.3420246.


Thirteen patients with definite multiple sclerosis (MS), studied 16-24 months previously with magnetic resonance (MR) imaging with and without enhancement by intravenously administered gadolinium diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid (DTPA) dimeglumine, were reexamined with a similar protocol. Assessment of enhancement and clinical activity in both studies revealed that enhancement was observed in 13 of 14 cases in which clinical activity had changed within 4 weeks of the study and thus appeared more sensitive than clinical examination in determining active disease. The 3-minute postinjection, short repetition time image (TR) was the most efficient for depicting enhancement. Enhancing lesions (active plaques) arose from previously hyper- or isointense regions on long TR images. Previously active lesions reverted to areas of iso- or hyperintensity on long TR images. Serial comparison of long TR images in this population reveals a decrease in high-intensity lesions on long TR images in some cases and an increase in others. The findings of high-intensity regions on long TR images and previously enhancing lesions both becoming isointense suggests that transient inflammatory changes with concomitant edema without demyelination and/or with significant remyelination may occur in some MS lesions. MS lesions are dynamic; both active and inactive lesions may show dramatic change on longitudinal MR imaging studies.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Blood-Brain Barrier
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Contrast Media*
  • Drug Combinations
  • Female
  • Gadolinium DTPA
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Male
  • Meglumine*
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Sclerosis / diagnosis*
  • Organometallic Compounds*
  • Pentetic Acid*
  • Sorbitol / analogs & derivatives*
  • Time Factors


  • Contrast Media
  • Drug Combinations
  • Organometallic Compounds
  • Sorbitol
  • Meglumine
  • Pentetic Acid
  • Gadolinium DTPA