2019 Volume 18 Issue 4 Pages 265-271
Purpose: The accuracy of flow velocity and three-directional velocity components are important for the precise visualization of hemodynamics by 3D cine phase-contrast MRI (3D cine PC MRI, also referred to as 4D-flow). The aim of this study was to verify the accuracy of these measurements of prototype or commercially available 3D cine PC MRI obtained by three different manufactures’ MR scanners.
Methods: The verification of the accuracy of flow velocity in 3D cine PC MRI was performed by circulating blood mimicking fluid through a straight-tube phantom in a slanting position, such that the three-directional velocity components were simultaneously measurable, using three 3T MR scanners from different manufacturers. The data obtained were processed by phase correction, and the velocity and three-directional velocity components in the center of the tube on the central cross section of a slab were calculated. The velocity profile in each three directions and the composite velocity profiles were compared with the calculated reference values, using the Hagen–Poiseuille equation. In addition, velocity profiles and the spatially time-averaged velocity perpendicular to the tube were compared with the theoretical values and measured values by a flowmeter, respectively.
Results: An underestimation of the maximum velocity in the center of the tube and an overestimation of the velocity near the tube wall due to partial volume effects were observed in all three scanners. A roughening and flattening of profiles in the center of the tube were observed in one scanner, due, presumably, to the low signal-to-noise ratio. However, the spatially time-averaged velocities corresponded well with the measured values by the flowmeter in all three scanners.
Conclusion: In this study, we have demonstrated that the accuracy of flow velocity and three-directional velocity components in 3D cine PC MRI was satisfactory in all three MR scanners.