Effectiveness of MR imaging for diagnosing the mild forms of acute pancreatitis: Comparison with MDCT


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Abstract

PurposeTo assess the usefulness of MRI and determine which MR sequence is most effective for diagnosing the mild forms of acute pancreatitis.Materials and MethodsForty subjects (20 normal volunteers and 20 patients with a mild form of acute pancreatitis) underwent MRI with fat-suppressed T1-weighted fast low-angle shot (FLASH), half-Fourier acquisition single-shot turbo spin-echo (HASTE), and TSE short TI inversion recovery (TSE-STIR) sequences. The 20 patients with a mild form of acute pancreatitis underwent multidetector CT (MDCT) and MRI within a 24-hour interval. We qualitatively analyzed all of the images by assessing inflammatory changes in the pancreas and peripancreatic fat. We quantitatively compared differences in pancreas-liver contrast between the control and patient groups for each MR sequence by measuring the signal intensities of the pancreas and liver.ResultsTSE-STIR was the best of the four modalities for delineating peripancreatic and pancreatic inflammation (P < 0.01). TSE-STIR depicted definitive peripancreatic and pancreatic inflammation in 18 and 15 patients, respectively. MDCT depicted only three cases of peripancreatic inflammation. TSE-STIR was also produced the best the best quantitative results of the MR sequences (P = 0.09).ConclusionMRI is helpful for diagnosing the mild forms of acute pancreatitis. We recommend the use of TSE-STIR imaging as part of the routine protocol for evaluating pancreatitis.

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