OBJECTIVE. Our objective was to compare two state-of-the-art coronary MRI (CMRI) sequences with regard to image quality and diagnostic accuracy for the detection of coronary artery disease (CAD). SUBJECTS AND METHODS. Twenty patients with known CAD were examined with a navigator-gated and corrected free-breathing 3D segmented gradient-echo (turbo field-echo) CMRI sequence and a steady-state free precession sequence (balanced turbo field-echo). CMRI was performed in a transverse plane for the left coronary artery and a double-oblique plane for the right coronary artery system. Subjective image quality (1- to 4-point scale, with 1 indicating excellent quality) and objective image quality parameters were independently determined for both sequences. Sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy for the detection of significant (≥ 50% diameter) coronary artery stenoses were determined as defined in invasive catheter X-ray coronary angiography. RESULTS. Subjective image quality was superior for the balanced turbo field-echo approach (1.8 ± 0.9 vs 2.3 ± 1.0 for turbo field-echo; p < 0.001). Vessel sharpness, signal-to-noise ratio, and contrast-to-noise ratio were all superior for the balanced turbo field-echo approach (p < 0.01 for signal-to-noise ratio and contrast-to-noise ratio). Of the 103 segments, 18% of turbo field-echo segments and 9% of balanced turbo field-echo segments had to be excluded from disease evaluation because of insufficient image quality. Sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy for the detection of significant coronary artery stenoles in the evaluated segments were 92%, 67%, 85%, respectively, for turbo field-echo and 82%, 82%, 81%, respectively, for balanced turbo field-echo. CONCLUSION. Balanced turbo field-echo offers improved image quality with significantly fewer nondiagnostic segments when compared with turbo field-echo. For the detection of CAD, both sequences showed comparable accuracy for the visualized segments.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging