Validation of contrast-enhanced time-resolved magnetic resonance angiography in pre-ablation planning in patients with atrial fibrillation: comparison with traditional technique

Academic Article


  • © 2018, Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature. Bolus timing is critical to optimal magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) acquisitions but can be challenging in some patients. Our purpose was to evaluate whether contrast-enhanced time-resolved magnetic resonance angiography (TR-MRA), a dynamic multiphase sequence that does not rely on bolus timing, is a viable alternative method to conventional 3D fast-long angle shot contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance angiography (CE-MRA). Coronal subtracted conventional CE-MRA images in 50 consecutive patients presenting for pre-atrial fibrillation ablation pulmonary venous (PV) mapping were compared with 50 TR-MRA images performed in 50 subsequent patients. The TR-MRA protocol was modified to optimize spatial resolution with slightly reduced temporal resolution (6.1 s scan time). Three experienced readers evaluated each scan’s image quality and relative left atrial (LA) opacification based on a 4-point scale and diagnostic PV visualization in a binary fashion. Additionally, LA signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR), and PV dimensions were measured for both techniques. TR-MRA had significantly higher overall image quality (3.10 ± 0.69 vs. 2.42 ± 0.69, p < 0.0001), and LA opacification scores (3.33 ± 0.70 vs. 2.15 ± 1.13, p < 0.0001) compared to CE-MRA. The proportion of diagnostically visualized pulmonary veins was 137/150 (91%) in the CE-MRA group vs. 147/150 (98%) with TR-MRA (p = 0.010). Both SNR and CNR were higher with TR-MRA vs. CE-MRA (277.9 ± 48.9 vs. 106.8 ± 41, p = 0.002 and 100.3 ± 41.7 vs. 70.7 ± 48.0, p = 0.002, respectively). Inter-reader variance of individual PV measurements for each of the MR techniques ranged between 0.62 and 1.47 mm and the ICC for vein measurements was higher with TR-MRA (range: 0.62–0.81) compared to CE-MRA (range: 0.47–0.64). TR-MRA, modified to maximize spatial resolution, offers an alternative method for performing high quality MRA examinations in patients with AF. TR-MRA offers greater overall image quality, PV visualization, and similarly reproducible PV measurements compared to traditional CE-MRA, without the challenges of proper bolus timing.
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  • Zghaib T; Shahid A; Pozzessere C; Porter KK; Chu LC; Eng J; Calkins H; Kamel IR; Nazarian S; Zimmerman SL
  • Start Page

  • 1451
  • End Page

  • 1458
  • Volume

  • 34
  • Issue

  • 9