Clinical Applications for Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Radiotherapy

Christina Tsien, Yue Cao, Thomas Chenevert

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


In this article, we review the clinical applications of diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the radiotherapy treatment of several key clinical sites, including those of the central nervous system, the head and neck, the prostate, and the cervix. Diffusion-weighted MRI (DWI) is an imaging technique that is rapidly gaining widespread acceptance owing to its ease and wide availability. DWI measures the mobility of water within tissue at the cellular level without the need of any exogenous contrast agent. For radiotherapy treatment planning, DWI improves upon conventional imaging techniques, by better characterization of tumor tissue properties required for tumor grading, diagnosis, and target volume delineation. Because DWI is also a sensitive marker for alterations in tumor cellularity, it has potential clinical applications in the early assessment of treatment response following radiation therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)218-226
Number of pages9
JournalSeminars in Radiation Oncology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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