Quantification of myocardial blood flow using non–electrocardiogram-triggered MRI with three-slice coverage

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Accurate quantification of myocardial perfusion is dependent on reliable electrocardiogram (ECG) triggering. Measuring myocardial blood flow (MBF) in patients with arrhythmias or poor ECGs is currently infeasible with MR. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the feasibility of a non–ECG-triggered method with clinically useful three-slice ventricular coverage for measurement of MBF in healthy volunteers.


A saturation recovery magnetization–prepared gradient recalled echo acquisition was continuously repeated during first-pass imaging. A slice-interleaved radial trajectory was employed to enable image-based retrospective triggering. The arterial input function was generated using a beat-by-beat T1 estimation method. The proposed technique was validated against a conventional ECG-triggered dual-bolus technique in 10 healthy volunteers. The technique was further demonstrated under adenosine stress in 12 healthy volunteers.


The proposed method produced MBF with no significant difference compared with the ECG-triggered technique. The proposed method yielded mean myocardial perfusion reserve comparable to published literature.


We have developed a non–ECG-triggered quantitative perfusion imaging method. In this preliminary study, our results demonstrate that our method yields comparable MBF compared with the conventional ECG-triggered method and that it is feasible for stress imaging. Magn Reson Med 75:2112–2120, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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