Rationale and objectives: The authors evaluated the degree of fatty infiltration of the liver in subjects with diffuse liver steatosis using image-guided 1H localized MR spectroscopy and correlated the magnetic resonance (MR)-determined fat fraction with the computed tomography (CT) liver/spleen density ratio and histologic evaluation.
Methods: MR measurements were performed at 1.5 T by applying a double-spin-echo localization sequence. Twenty-six patients underwent MR and CT examinations and ultrasound (US)-guided biopsy. Additionally, three healthy volunteers underwent MR examination. Steatosis severity was estimated using 1) the ratio between fat and total MR signal areas; 2) the ratio between liver and spleen CT number; and 3) histologic score.
Results: The linear correlation between MR fat/fat-plus-water signal ratio and CT liver/spleen density values ratio is statistically significant. Both techniques correlate well with histologic score. No significant correlation exists between water or fat T2 values and the severity of steatosis.
Conclusions: 1H MR spectroscopy allows a noninvasive estimate of the hepatic fat content.