Purpose: Quantitative T2-relaxation-based contrast has the potential to provide valuable clinical information. Practical T2-mapping, however, is impaired either by prohibitively long acquisition times or by contamination of fast multiecho protocols by stimulated and indirect echoes. This work presents a novel postprocessing approach aiming to overcome the common penalties associated with multiecho protocols, and enabling rapid and accurate mapping of T2 relaxation values. Methods: Bloch simulations are used to estimate the actual echo-modulation curve (EMC) in a multi-spin-echo experiment. Simulations are repeated for a range of T2 values and transmit field scales, yielding a database of simulated EMCs, which is then used to identify the T2 value whose EMC most closely matches the experimentally measured data at each voxel. Results: T2 maps of both phantom and in vivo scans were successfully reconstructed, closely matching maps produced from single spin-echo data. Results were consistent over the physiological range of T2 values and across different experimental settings. Conclusion: The proposed technique allows accurate T2 mapping in clinically feasible scan times, free of user- and scanner-dependent variations, while providing a comprehensive framework that can be extended to model other parameters (e.g., T1, B1+, B0, diffusion) and support arbitrary acquisition schemes.
- Quantitative MRI
- T mapping
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging