Daniel Herzka (NHLBI)
Elliot Mcveigh (NHLBI)
Available for licensing is a technique for improving magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) that employs steady state free precession (SSFP). One such technique, fast imaging with steady-state free precession (FISP), is a well established and is a fast MR imaging method commonly used to evaluate cardiovascular anatomy and function. FISP provides high signal to noise ratio (SNR) images with excellent contrast between blood and the myocardium. However, these images are often contaminated with high signal from fatty tissue resulting in image artifacts. Conventional methods of fat signal suppression in FISP are often inefficient and result in a loss of temporal resolution. The present pulse sequence provides intrinsic chemical selectivity and significant attenuation of fat-based signals (by a factor of four compared to conventional FISP imaging) while maintaining the preferred high SNR for water-based tissues provided by standard FISP. In addition, the pulse sequence design is such that the high temporal resolution of FISP is not compromised. Thus, this technology offers a valuable improvement to standard cardiac MRI methods.