Development and evaluation of a multichannel endorectal RF coil for prostate MRI at 7T in combination with an external surface array

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Abstract

Purpose To develop and evaluate a sterilizable multichannel endorectal coil (ERC) for use in combination with an external surface array (ESA) for high-resolution anatomical and functional studies of the prostate at 7T. Materials and Methods A two-loop ERC (ERC-2L) and a microstrip-loop ERC (ERC-ML) were compared at 7T in terms of transmit and receive performance. The best-performing ERC was evaluated alone and in combination with the ESA through 1) simulations on both phantom and an anatomically correct numerical human model to assess B1+ transmit and specific absorption rate (SAR) efficiencies, and 2) phantom experiments to calculate B1+ transmit efficiency and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Phantom studies were also performed to look at heating when using the ERC as a transmitter and for comparing the new coil against a single-channel balloon-type ERC (ERC-b). High-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) acquisitions were performed on a single healthy subject using the two-channel ERC combined with the ESA. Results Compared to the ERC-ML, the ERC-2L demonstrated 20% higher SAR efficiency and higher SNR 3 cm from the coil. The presence of a tuned and detuned ERC-2L did not alter the peak local SAR of the ESA alone; however, the detuned ERC-2L had 45% less peak local SAR around the rectum compared to the tuned ERC-2L. The receive-only version of the ERC-2L improved the SNR 4.7-fold and 1.3-fold compared to the ESA and ERC-b, respectively. In combination with the ESA, the ERC-2L supported in-plane voxel-size of 0.36 × 0.36 mm2 in T2-weighted anatomic imaging. Conclusion The reusable ERC-2L combined with an ESA offers a high SNR imaging platform for translational studies of the prostate at 7T.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1279-1287
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Volume43
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016

Keywords

  • 7 Tesla body imaging
  • MRI
  • endorectal coil
  • prostate
  • prostate cancer
  • ultrahigh field

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