Purpose: To evaluate prospectively a non-breath-hold magnetic resonance (MR) cholangiographic technique.
Materials and methods: Twenty-nine non-breath-hold, heavily T2-weighted, turbo spin-echo MR cholangiograms were obtained in 28 patients and compared with 28 direct cholangiographic studies in 24 patients.
Results: MR cholangiography showed the intrahepatic ducts (IHDs) within the peripheral third of the liver and within the four hepatic segments in 100% of cases with dilated ducts. IHDs were seen in the peripheral third in 82% of cases with nondilated ducts and within the four hepatic segments in 91%. The extrahepatic duct (EHD), dilated and nondilated, was visualized in 90% of cases. Filling defects were identified in the EHD in 71% of cases and in the gallbladder in 100%. All obstructions were identified and their site and character accurately shown in most cases. The presence of IHD dilatation was accurately shown, and estimates of EHD and main pancreatic duct caliber correlated closely with those of direct cholangiography.
Conclusion: Non-breath-hold MR cholangiography is a reliable method for depiction of the biliary system.