The ability for contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging to provide significant diagnostic impact to focal and diffuse liver diseases requires knowledge, analysis, and technical optimization of the imaging techniques. Our review outlines the technical requirements needed to perform reproducible contrast-enhanced liver imaging and describes the important imaging features for assessing liver disease with conventional and alternate gadolinium-based contrast media. We present an experimental review of timing and quantification methods in dynamic contrast-enhanced liver imaging, with results of analysis showing perfusion and uptake curves in a series of patients and healthy subjects. An evidence-based methodology for reproducible arterial-phase imaging is detailed for performing a real-time bolus-tracking method. Additional diagnostic imaging features manifest at later imaging phases, in which the kinetic behavior of the contrast media serves to further specify focal lesions, while revealing detailed information of diffuse liver disease, particularly hepatic fibrosis. We review the utility of alternate gadolinium-based contrast media that undergo hepatocyte uptake, for applications related to liver tumor imaging. We also introduce results showing the potential for using alternate hepatocyte uptake agents to detect and quantify liver changes related to acute and chronic hepatitides.
- Contrast-enhanced MR
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging