ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to test the effectiveness of laser-hyperpolarized helium 3 (3He) as a contrast agent for magnetic resonance (MR) imaging of porcine paranasal sinuses.
Imaging experiments were conducted on the heads of four 50-kg Yorkshire pigs after open sinus surgery was performed. Paranasal sinus MR images were obtained with laser-polarized 3He gas produced through the spin-exchange method. The gas was delivered into the sinuses through two 14-gauge plastic catheters inserted in the nostrils. The 3He MR images were then compared with spatially correlated proton MR images.
The porcine paranasal sinuses were adequately depicted by MR imaging with hyperpolarized 3He. The signal intensity of the paranasal sinuses on the 3He MR images was related to the size of the opening joining the sinuses to the nasal cavity and was clearly time dependent.
Hyperpolarized 3He MR imaging may be particularly useful for identifying the anatomic configuration of the paranasal sinuses, as well as for assessing sinus aeration. Further study of the time-dependence of 3He signal intensity may help increase understanding of gas exchange in the sinuses.
Academic Radiology 05/2003; 10(4):373-8. · 1.69 Impact Factor