Purpose: In order to explore the utility of fast spin-echo techniques in the neck, 50 consecutive conventional spin-echo (CSE) long TR examinations were compared with 50 consecutive fast spin-echo (FSE) long TR scans for cervical lymph nodes. Materials and Methods: Standard CSE examinations used parameters of 2200/80/1 (TR/TE/excitations), 256×128 matrix, 5 mm thick with interslice gaps between 1 and 2.5 mm. FSE studies were employed with TR of 4000/80/2, 256×192 matrix, fat suppression and 5 mm contiguous slices. Standard T1-weighted examinations and clinical correlation were used as proof of nodal presence. Results: Overall vascular flow artefacts, patient motion artefacts, and image quality were comparable between the two techniques. Lymph node detectability was superior with FSE scans (P<0.05). Typical time saved was approximately 4.5 min with FSE, despite the use of larger matrices, contiguous slices and twice the excitations. Conclusion: FSE is a competitive technique to CSE images in the neck, yielding similar quality images with higher resolution, reduced scan time, and improved lymph node detectability.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging