Echo-planar FLAIR imaging in evaluation of intracranial lesions

Radiographics. 1996 May;16(3):575-84. doi: 10.1148/radiographics.16.3.8897625.


Fluid-attenuated inversion-recovery (FLAIR) imaging is a magnetic resonance imaging technique that improves lesion detection in the brain. This technique suppresses signal from free water in cerebrospinal fluid and maintains the hyperintense lesion contrast of T2-weighted spin-echo imaging. Unfortunately, conventional FLAIR imaging requires a long acquisition time and provides a limited number of sections. A combination of echo-planar imaging and FLAIR imaging offers the image contrast effects of FLAIR imaging and the speed of echo-planar imaging. Clinically, the echo-planar FLAIR technique is most helpful in detecting subtle, early lesions that do not enhance, such as early infarct, demyelinating disease, early infection, and trauma. The increased magnetic susceptibility effect associated with the echo-planar technique can be clinically useful in detecting subtle hemorrhage and cavernous angioma. Echo-planar FLAIR imaging is a practical and efficient means of screening the entire brain in a short time.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Demyelinating Diseases / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods*
  • Infections / diagnosis
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*