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Author Notes:

Correspondence: Marijn E. Brummer, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Radiology, Emory University, School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics/CRC, 2015 Uppergate Drive, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, Office: 404-727-5882, FAX: 404-727-6024, mbrumme@emory.edu.

We thank Dr. Gladys Hirschman of NIH/NIDDK who championed support for this study, and Rob van der Geest of the Leiden University Medical Center for his continued support with the FLOW software. We thank the manuscript reviewers for their important suggestions and careful critique of the paper.


Research Funding:

This work was supported in part by grants UO1-DK56956 and MO1-RR00039 from the NIH.


  • Science & Technology
  • Life Sciences & Biomedicine
  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine & Medical Imaging
  • quantitative flow
  • renal blood flow
  • flow validation
  • kidney imaging
  • phase velocity imaging

Renal Arterial Blood Flow Measurement by Breath-Held MRI: Accuracy in Phantom Scans and Reproducibility in Healthy Subjects

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Journal Title:

Magnetic Resonance in Medicine


Volume 63, Number 4


, Pages 940-950

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


This study evaluates reliability of current technology for measurement of renal arterial blood flow by breath-held velocity-encoded MRI. Overall accuracy was determined by comparing MRI measurements with known flow in controlled flow loop phantom studies. Measurements using prospective and retrospective gating methods were compared in phantom studies with pulsatile flow, not revealing significant differences. Phantom study results showed good accuracy with deviations from true flow consistently below 13% for vessel diameters 3 mm and above. Reproducibility in human subjects was evaluated by repeat studies in six healthy control subjects, comparing immediate repetition of the scan, repetition of the scan plane scouting, and week-to-week variation in repeated studies. The standard deviation in the four-week protocol of repeated in-vivo measurements of single-kidney renal flow in normal subjects was 59.7 ml/min, corresponding with an average coefficient of variation of 10.55%. Comparison of RBF reproducibility with and without gadolinium contrast showed no significant differences in mean or standard deviation. A breakdown among error components showed corresponding marginal standard deviations (coefficients of variation) 23.8 ml/min (4.21%) for immediate repetition of the breath-held flow scan, 39.13 ml/min (6.90%) for repeated plane scouting, and 40.76 ml/min (7.20%) for weekly fluctuations in renal blood flow.

Copyright information:

© 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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