Volume 18 Supplement 1
T2*-weighted MRI technique for visualization of RF ablation lesions
© Kholmovski et al. 2016
Published: 27 January 2016
LGE-MRI is widely used to assess cardiac RF ablation lesions. However, LGE-MRI requires contrast injection and the appearance, dimensions and visibility of lesions in LGE-MRI noticeably change with time after ablation and time after contrast injection. Recently proposed non-contrast T1-weighted (T1w) technique is only applicable to visualize acute (< 3 days) RF lesions. The main goal of this study was to develop and validate a non-contrast MRI technique for assessment of sub-acute (> 3 days) RF ablations.
Non-contrast T2*-weighted (T2*w) MRI technique for RF lesion visualization has been implemented. This technique exploits the difference in T2* relaxation between normal and ablated myocardium. Reduction in T2* relaxation time of ablated myocardial tissues is caused by the transformation of hemoglobin into hemosiderin from ruptured and obstructed blood vessels as a result of RF ablation. To validate this technique, RF ablations were performed in 6 canines using ThermoCool catheter (Biosense Webster) at 30 Watts for 30 seconds. Imaging studies were performed on a 3T scanner (Verio, Siemens HealthCare) at 0, 1, 4, and 8 weeks post-ablation. Study protocol included T1w, T2*w, and LGE scans with a resolution of 1.25 × 1.25 × 2.5 mm and T1, T2 and T2* mapping.
Strong correlation (R2 = 0.908) between lesions volumes estimated from LGE and T2*w images acquired 8 weeks post-ablation was found (Fig. 2, bottom panel). Lesion volume from T2*w scans was about 27% smaller than lesion volume from LGE scans.
T2* relaxation time of cardiac RF ablation lesions significantly reduces with time after ablation. Non-contrast T2*w technique can be used to visualize sub-acute RF ablations as early as a week post-ablation. Visibility of the lesions in T2*w image considerably improves with time after ablation as T2* relaxation time of the lesions becomes shorter.
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