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Liver steatosis and in- and out-of-phase MR imaging: theory and clinical applications of 3T

  • B. Guiu
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • R. Loffroy
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • D. Ben salem
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • D. Masson
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • G. Hervé
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • J.M. Petit
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • D. Krausé
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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  • J.P. Cercueil
    Affiliations
    (Service de Radiodiagnostic et d'lmagerie médicale diagnostique et thérapeutique, CHU Dijon 2, blvd. du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, BP 77908, F-21079, Dijon Cedex, France). J Radiol 2007;88:1845–1853.
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      Liver streatosis may evolve into steatohepatitis then cirrhosis with related complications. It may also contribute to hepatocellular failure, sometimes fatal after major hepatectomy, especially in the setting of liver transplantation with living donor. Imaging must allow noninvasive detection and accurate quantification. In- and out-of-phase magnetic resonance imaging routinely performed in clinical practice is a simple robust means of achieving these goals. In this article, we will review the histological, pathophysiologic, and clinical features of liver streatosis and the key points of in and out phase pulse sequences and underlying physical principles. The T2low asterisk relaxation, cause of a loss of signal between both echo times, must be taken into account. Echo times must be known for image interpretation and optimized especially at 3 T. Finally the T1 of lipids and water is different and causes T1 effects that may lead to quantification errors while being advantageous for image interpretation. The combination of these factors allows detection and quantification of liver streatosis in routine clinical practice.
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