10.5 T MRI static field effects on human cognitive, vestibular, and physiological function

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Abstract

Purpose: To perform a pilot study to quantitatively assess cognitive, vestibular, and physiological function during and after exposure to a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) system with a static field strength of 10.5 Tesla at multiple time scales. Methods: A total of 29 subjects were exposed to a 10.5 T MRI field and underwent vestibular, cognitive, and physiological testing before, during, and after exposure; for 26 subjects, testing and exposure were repeated within 2–4 weeks of the first visit. Subjects also reported sensory perceptions after each exposure. Comparisons were made between short and long term time points in the study with respect to the parameters measured in the study; short term comparison included pre-vs-isocenter and pre-vs-post (1–24 h), while long term compared pre-exposures 2–4 weeks apart. Results: Of the 79 comparisons, 73 parameters were unchanged or had small improvements after magnet exposure. The exceptions to this included lower scores on short term (i.e. same day) executive function testing, greater isocenter spontaneous eye movement during visit 1 (relative to pre-exposure), increased number of abnormalities on videonystagmography visit 2 versus visit 1 and a mix of small increases (short term visit 2) and decreases (short term visit 1) in blood pressure. In addition, more subjects reported metallic taste at 10.5 T in comparison to similar data obtained in previous studies at 7 T and 9.4 T. Conclusion: Initial results of 10.5 T static field exposure indicate that 1) cognitive performance is not compromised at isocenter, 2) subjects experience increased eye movement at isocenter, and 3) subjects experience small changes in vital signs but no field-induced increase in blood pressure. While small but significant differences were found in some comparisons, none were identified as compromising subject safety. A modified testing protocol informed by these results was devised with the goal of permitting increased enrollment while providing continued monitoring to evaluate field effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-176
Number of pages14
JournalMagnetic Resonance Imaging
Volume73
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by NIBIB P41 EB027061 , NIH (United States National institute of Health) S10 RR029672 and U01 EB025144 .

Keywords

  • Cognitive function
  • Human vital signs
  • MRI safety
  • Physiologic function
  • Static magnetic field
  • Ultra-high field MRI
  • Vestibular function

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