A hybridized dual-imaging system combining real-time ultrasound imaging and MRI was utilized for cardiac imaging at 1.5 T and 3 T. The ultrasound scanner with a programmable software interface was connected via computer to the MRI scanner. Electronic noise was eliminated with electromagnetic shielding and grounding to the screen room. At 3 T, real-time prospective motion compensation in dynamic cine cardiac imaging was implemented using B-mode ultrasound imaging. The ultrasound technique avoided drawbacks such as signal saturation or steady-state interruption of the MR navigator gating. At 1.5 T, a low-latency real-time feedback to balanced steady state free precision MR imaging was performed in three normal volunteers. Results showed active tracking of the heart during respiratory motion and improvement in timeaveraged cardiovascular images. Future studies can fully exploit the potential of the high-frequency position information provided by the ultrasound system for more advanced applications in real-time organ tracking.
- Cardiac MRI
- Navigator echo