Comparison of lesion enhancement on spin-echo and gradient-echo images

P. M. Chappell, N. J. Pelc, T. K F Foo, G. H. Glover, S. P. Haros, D. R. Enzmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: To compare lesion enhancement after injection of gadopentetate dimeglumine on spin-echo and gradient-echo T1-weighted images. METHODS: A total of 48 contrast-enhancing intracranial lesions were evaluated using a spin-echo and two gradient-echo T1-weighted pulse sequences. Percent contrast, contrast-to-noise, and signal-to-noise measurements were made on the spin-echo T1-weighted, three-dimensional gradient-echo, and multiplanar gradient-echo sequences. RESULTS: The measurements were somewhat different for the following categories of lesions: extraaxial, intraaxial with edema, and intraaxial without edema. The latter group provided the greatest diagnostic challenge: three of 19 such lesions 1 cm in size or smaller could not be identified on three-dimensional gradient-echo images, and one could not be identified on multi-planar gradient-echo images. The spin-echo T1- weighted sequence demonstrated significantly higher percent contrast (P <.05) and greater contrast to noise (P <.03) than either gradient-echo sequence for these small intraaxial lesions without edema. For extraaxial and intraaxial lesions with edema, percent C was similar for spin-echo T1- weighted and three-dimensional gradient-echo images, while contrast to noise was greater for spin-echo T1-weighted images. This reflected greater tissue noise with gradient-echo sequences. CONCLUSION: The T1-weighted spin-echo sequence was preferred for detecting the full spectrum of contrast-enhancing lesions of the central nervous system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-44
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Neuroradiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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