Comparison of fitting methods and b-value sampling strategies for intravoxel incoherent motion in breast cancer

Gene Young Cho, Linda Moy, Jeff L. Zhang, Steven Baete, Riccardo Lattanzi, Melanie Moccaldi, James S. Babb, Sungheon Kim, Daniel K. Sodickson, Eric E. Sigmund

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose To compare fitting methods and sampling strategies, including the implementation of an optimized b-value selection for improved estimation of intravoxel incoherent motion (IVIM) parameters in breast cancer. Methods Fourteen patients (age, 48.4 ± 14.27 years) with cancerous lesions underwent 3 Tesla breast MRI examination for a HIPAA-compliant, institutional review board approved diffusion MR study. IVIM biomarkers were calculated using "free" versus "segmented" fitting for conventional or optimized (repetitions of key b-values) b-value selection. Monte Carlo simulations were performed over a range of IVIM parameters to evaluate methods of analysis. Relative bias values, relative error, and coefficients of variation (CV) were obtained for assessment of methods. Statistical paired t-tests were used for comparison of experimental mean values and errors from each fitting and sampling method. Results Comparison of the different analysis/sampling methods in simulations and experiments showed that the "segmented" analysis and the optimized method have higher precision and accuracy, in general, compared with "free" fitting of conventional sampling when considering all parameters. Regarding relative bias, IVIM parameters fp and Dt differed significantly between "segmented" and "free" fitting methods. Conclusion IVIM analysis may improve using optimized selection and "segmented" analysis, potentially enabling better differentiation of breast cancer subtypes and monitoring of treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1077-1085
Number of pages9
JournalMagnetic resonance in medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • IVIM
  • b-value optimization
  • breast cancer
  • diffusion gradient
  • diffusion weighted MRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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