The purpose of this study was to reduce artifacts and increase imaging speed in fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) imaging of the urinary bladder. An existing half-Fourier, single-shot fast spin-echo imaging sequence was modified to allow presaturation with a non-slice-selective inversion recovery pulse (NSI SSFLAIR). Four independent, blinded readers rated severity of bladder artifacts and image quality in six normal male volunteers. NSI SSFLAIR effectively suppressed bladder urine signal in all six cases using a TI of 2900-3100 msec. Although NSI SSFLAIR images were noisier than standard fast spin-echo images, imaging time was only 10 seconds per slice location. Furthermore, perceived image sharpness was only minimally reduced, and conspicuity of the seminal vesicles and peripheral zone of the prostate were nearly equivalent. NSI SSFLAIR provides rapid T2-weighted imaging of the bladder wall and perivesicular tissues with nearly complete negation of signal from urine in the bladder.
View details for PubMedID 10862067