Purpose: Simultaneous multislab (SMSb) 4D flow MRI was developed and implemented at 7T for accelerated acquisition of the 3D blood velocity vector field in both carotid bifurcations. Methods: SMSb was applied to 4D flow to acquire blood velocities in both carotid bifurcations in sagittal orientation using a local transmit/receive coil at 7T. (Formula presented.) transmit efficiency was optimized by (Formula presented.) shimming. SMSb 4D flow was obtained in 8 healthy subjects in single-band (SB) and multiband (MB) fashion. Additionally, MB data were retrospectively undersampled to simulate GRAPPA R = 2 (MB2_GRAPPA2), and both SB datasets were added to form an artificial MB dataset (SumSB). The band separation performance was quantified by signal leakage. Peak velocity and total flow values were calculated and compared to SB via intraclass correlation analysis (ICC). Results: Clean slab separation was achieved yielding a mean signal leakage of 13% above the mean SB noise level. Mean total flow for MB2, SumSB, and MB_GRAPPA2 deviated less than 9% from the SB values. Peak velocities averaged over all vessels and subjects were 0.48 ± 0.11 m/s for SB, 0.47 ± 0.12 m/s for SumSB, 0.50 ± 0.13 m/s for MB2, and 0.53 ± 0.13 m/s for MB2_GRAPPA2. ICC revealed excellent absolute agreement and consistency of total flow for all methods compared to SB2. Peak velocity showed good to excellent agreement and consistency for SumSB and MB2 and MB2_GRAPPA2 method showed poor to excellent agreement and good to excellent consistency. Conclusion: Simultaneous multislab 4D Flow MRI allows accurate quantification of total flow and peak velocity while reducing scan times.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Prof. Michael Markl, Northwestern University, Chicago, for valuable discussions related to this work. We thank Scott Schillak and Brandon Tramm, Virtumed LLC, for initial housing design and coil fabrication. This work was supported by NIH grants (S10 RR26783, P41 EB027061, R21 EB009138, R01‐EB006835, R01‐EB007327, 1R21 NS106696‐01), the WM KECK Foundation, and by the American Heart Association (AHA) 16SDG30420005.
- 4D flow MRI
- 7 Tesla
- carotid artery