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Automatic Method for RF Coil Assessment in Clinical MRI: A Three-Dimensional Approach


Q Peng

Q Peng1*, (1)Radiology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, BRONX, NY

WE-G-217A-5 Wednesday 4:30:00 PM - 6:00:00 PM Room: 217A

Purpose:
MRI RF coil assessment is usually evaluated with region-of-interest (ROI) analysis from a single 2D phantom image. This simple approach has worked well for large volume coils or phased-array coil with large receivers, but not the high density phased-array coils characterized by 3D array arrangement of their multiple receivers. This abstract proposes a novel approach for quantitative coil assessment based on 3D imaging and 3D ROI analysis.

Methods:
To characterize all receivers of the coil of interest, a large uniform phantom (preferably a corresponding anthropometric phantom) and a large 3D geometric coverage fully includes the coil sensitivity volume was applied during MR imaging. After imaging, data from all receivers were used to reconstruct a composite 3D image, and to reconstruct 3D images from each individual receiver, leading to a total of N+1 3D image datasets (where N is the number of coil channels). IDL programs were developed to automatically perform ROI analysis on the composite image and on the individual receiver images. Instead of choosing one single 2D slice out of each 3D dataset, the whole 3D dataset was treated as a 3D image, and 3D ROIs were automatically generated for coil assessment.

Results:
This 3D coil evaluation approach could be applied to all clinical coils including quadrature body/head coils, and phased-array coils with 2 to 32 channels. 3D sensitivity map could be generated to check receiver function visually. 3D mean SNR, max SNR, and uniformity could be obtained from composite and individual channel 3D images fully automatically. Coil/receiver performance assessment was very fast and straightforward, regardless of the number of receivers of the coil.

Conclusions:
3D imaging in combination with 3D automatic ROI analysis is a fast, convenient, and less subjective approach for quantitative coil assessment, particularly for high density phased-array coils.

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