Magnetic resonance spin-labeling perfusion imaging of synovitis in inflammatory arthritis at 3.0 T

Andreas Boss, Petros Martirosian, Jan Fritz, Ina Kötter, Jörg C. Henes, Claus D. Claussen, Fritz Schick, Marius Horger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Objective: The aim of this study was to test the feasibility of arterial spin labeling (ASL) perfusion imaging of synovitis in inflammatory joint diseases on a clinical 3.0 T whole-body scanner. Materials and methods: Fifteen patients (geometric mean 47 years, range 8-69 years) with different types of inflammatory arthritis of the finger or wrist joints participated in the study. In addition to conventional spin-echo and dynamic contrast-enhanced FLASH3D sequences, a novel spin-labeling technique (FAIR-TrueFISP) for quantitative assessment of tissue perfusion was applied. Perfusion maps were calculated pixel-wise by means of the extended Bloch equations. Results: Perfusion maps showed good image quality with clear visualization of hyperaemia in synovitis. The computed perfusion maps corresponded best to subtraction images of the dynamic series from 30 to 60 s after contrast-medium injection. The quantitative perfusion values of synovitis showed a good correlation with the disease activity. Perfusion values for inflamed synovium in phase of high activity were up to 230 ml/100 g tissue/min. Conclusion: The proposed modality allows for the assessment of disease activity in arthritis without the application of contrast-medium offering a new tool for therapy monitoring. As the technique provides quantitative information on hyperaemia, it potentially offers new insights in the pathophysiology of arthritic diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-180
Number of pages6
JournalMagnetic Resonance Materials in Physics, Biology and Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • ASL
  • Arterial spin labeling
  • Inflammatory joint diseases
  • Perfusion imaging
  • Synovitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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