Fetal fast MR imaging: reproducibility, technical quality, and conspicuity of anatomy

Radiology. 1998 Feb;206(2):549-54. doi: 10.1148/radiology.206.2.9457211.


Purpose: To evaluate the normal appearance of fetal anatomy, the conspicuity of fetal organs, the reproducibility of images, and the limitations to image quality with the use of half-Fourier, single-shot rapid acquisition with relaxation enhancement (RARE) magnetic resonance (MR) imaging.

Materials and methods: Fifty-four fetuses of 49 pregnancies underwent MR imaging with the half-Fourier, single-shot RARE technique. Two reviewers attempted to identify 47 organs and anatomic regions in each fetus. Organ or region conspicuity, image quality, and the limitations of image quality were graded.

Results: Fetal anatomy was well depicted in fetuses over 20 weeks in gestational age. Fetal imaging was limited by gestational age of 20 weeks or less usually owing to the small size of the organ or region being evaluated and, less frequently, by motion.

Conclusion: Half-Fourier, single-shot RARE MR imaging provided a detailed and reproducible evaluation of normal fetal anatomy, which can be used as a standard of reference in MR imaging of fetal anomalies.

MeSH terms

  • Artifacts
  • Female
  • Fetal Movement
  • Fetus / anatomy & histology*
  • Fourier Analysis
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Pregnancy
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Signal Processing, Computer-Assisted