New Non-Contrast MR Techniques (for MR angiography and tissue perfusion)

NATIVE enables excellent non-contrast MR angiographic imaging, with reproducible results. This new software/scan approach is particularly important given that the use of intravenous contrast media has come under recent increased scrutiny. Of relevance, the gadolinium chelates (and specifically the less stable agents in this class), which are used as MR contrast agents, have been linked to a condition called Nephrogenic Systemic Fibrosis (NSF) that can occur in patients with renal insufficiency.

Arterial Spin Labeling (ASL) is an MR technique using the water in arterial blood as an endogenous contrast agent to evaluate perfusion non-invasively (as opposed to the use of a gadolinium chelate for dynamic susceptibility perfusion imaging). ASL provides unique insight into human brain perfusion and function physiology by evaluating cerebral blood flow (CBF). ASL is capable of high spatial resolution perfusion imaging, making the technique appealing in the evaluation of stroke, tumors, degenerative diseases and epilepsy.

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