Heather Ting Ma

The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

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Publications (11)24 Total impact

  • [show abstract] [hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To investigate vertebral bone marrow fat content in elderly subjects related to sex, age, and bone mineral density (BMD) and relate these findings to published data in younger subjects. A total of 259 healthy subjects (145 females, 114 males; age range, 62-90 years) underwent proton ((1) H) MR spectroscopy of L3 vertebral body and BMD of the lumbar spine with results stratified according to age. Ninety age- and BMD-matched subjects were selected to determine sex differences in marrow fat content and BMD. In females, vertebral marrow fat content rose sharply between 55 and 65 years of age while in males vertebral marrow fat content rose gradually throughout life. Vertebral marrow fat content in females more than 60 years was approximately 10% higher in females than males, i.e., a reversal of sex difference reported in marrow fat content for subjects less than 60 years. Marrow fat content increases sharply in female subjects between 55 and 65 years of age while male subjects continue to increase marrow fat at a more gradual steady rate. Females older than 60 years have a higher marrow fat content than males. This increased deposition in marrow fat concurs with recognized changes in extraosseous fat distribution in postmenopausal females.
    Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging 02/2012; 36(1):225-30. · 2.57 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To apply pharmacokinetic modeling to the investigation of bone perfusion in subjects of varying bone mineral density. This study re-analyzed previous experimental data. A modified pharmacokinetic model was applied to data obtained from two prior studies of dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging of L3 vertebral body in 165 subjects (65 males, 100 females), classified into three groups (normal, osteopenia, and osteoporosis) according to bone mineral density. Three parameters, amplitude A, exchange rate (k(ep)), and elimination rate (k(el)), were obtained by fitting the signal intensity to the pharmacokinetic model. These parameters were compared across the three groups for males and females, respectively. Perfusion parameters, amplitude A was found to be reduced in osteoporotic subjects with additional, though less pronounced, reductions found in the permeability constant (A*k(ep)) and the elimination rate (k(el)). Increased marrow fat content was found in osteoporotic bone, which helped to partially explain the observed reduction in interstitial space. By pharmacokinetic model, bone perfusion can be quantitatively analyzed with alteration in functional parameters related to microcirculation in subjects of varying bone mineral density. Developing bone marrow specific pharmacokinetic models should help to deepen knowledge of physiological and pathological perfusion changes occurring in bone.
    Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging 05/2010; 31(5):1169-75. · 2.57 Impact Factor
  • [show abstract] [hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Correlation between kinematics and morphological characteristics of lumbar spine was studied in subjects with varying bone mineral density. Effect of morphological characteristics and bone mineral density on the lumbar spine movement was investigated. Morphology parameters were measured from radiographs and a high-frequency motion tracking device were employed to detect surface movement of lumbar spine. Multiple regression analysis identified factors influencing lumbar kinematics while ANOVA examined differences in morphology with normal bone mineral density, osteopenia and osteoporosis. The results show that morphological characteristics, such as wedging deformity, are indeed influential to the kinematics. Related to our previous report, abnormal lumbar kinematic pattern in the subjects with osteoporosis, this study shows although morphological characteristics were found significantly different among normal, osteopenia, and osteoporosis subjects, the change in lumbar kinematic pattern could not be fully explained by the altered vertebral or disc morphology.
    Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 2008. EMBS 2008. 30th Annual International Conference of the IEEE; 09/2008
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    ABSTRACT: A Bayesian network dynamic model was developed to determine the kinematics of the intervertebral joints of the lumbar spine. Radiographic images in flexion and extension postures were used as input data for modeling, together with movement information from the skin surface using an electromagnetic motion tracking system. Intervertebral joint movements were then estimated by the graphic network. The validity of the model was tested by comparing the predicted position of the vertebrae in the neutral position with those obtained from the radiographic image in the neutral posture. The correlation between the measured and predicted movements was 0.99 (p<0.01) with a mean error of less than 1.5 degrees. The movement sequence of the various vertebrae was examined based on the model output, and wide variations in the kinematic patterns were observed. The technique is non-invasive and has potential to be used clinically to measure the kinematics of lumbar intervertebral movement.
    Medical & Biological Engineering & Computing 04/2008; 46(4):333-40. · 1.79 Impact Factor
  • Zhengyi Yang, Heather Ting Ma, Deming Wang, Raymond Lee
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    ABSTRACT: Measurement errors of skin-mounted sensors in measuring forward bending movement of the lumbar spines are investigated. In this investigation, radiographic images capturing the entire lumbar spines' positions were acquired and used as a 'gold' standard. Seventeen young male volunteers (21 (SD 1) years old) agreed to participate in the study. Light-weight miniature sensors of the electromagnetic tracking systems-Fastrak were attached to the skin overlying the spinous processes of the lumbar spine. With the sensors attached, the subjects were requested to take lateral radiographs in two postures: neutral upright and full flexion. The ranges of motions of lumbar spine were calculated from two sets of digitized data: the bony markers of vertebral bodies and the sensors and compared. The differences between the two sets of results were then analyzed. The relative movement between sensor and vertebrae was decomposed into sensor sliding and titling, from which sliding error and titling error were introduced. Gross motion range of forward bending of lumbar spine measured from bony markers of vertebrae is 67.8 degrees (SD 10.6 degrees ) and that from sensors is 62.8 degrees (SD 12.8 degrees ). The error and absolute error for gross motion range were 5.0 degrees (SD 7.2 degrees ) and 7.7 degrees (SD 3.9 degrees ). The contributions of sensors placed on S1 and L1 to the absolute error were 3.9 degrees (SD 2.9 degrees ) and 4.4 degrees (SD 2.8 degrees ), respectively.
    Conference proceedings: ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference 02/2008; 2008:4740-3.
  • Conference proceedings: ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference 02/2008;
  • Bone 01/2008; 43. · 3.82 Impact Factor
  • Bone 01/2008; 43. · 3.82 Impact Factor
  • Bone 01/2008; 43. · 3.82 Impact Factor
  • Bone 01/2008; 43. · 3.82 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Lumbar spine kinematics was studied in subjects with normal bone mineral density, osteopenia and osteoporosis to determine the effect of bone mineral density and morphology on the flexion–extension movement patterns of the lumbar spine. Lateral radiographs and skin-mounted electromagnetic motion tracking sensors were employed to study lumbar spine kinematics using a Bayesian Belief Network model. The predicted angular displacement of the vertebrae had a high correlation (r=0.91, p<0.001) with the actual movements. The overall mean error was −0.51°±3.11°. Intervertebral angular displacement and velocity consistently increased from L1/L2 to L5/S1. Differences were observed in the movement pattern between normal subjects and those with decreased bone density. In normal subjects, vertebral angular acceleration consistently decreased from the upper to the lower vertebrae but the same consistent predictable pattern was not observed in the subjects with decreased bone mineral density. It is possible that these changes in kinematic behaviours are related to morphological changes as well as altered neuromuscular functions.
    Medical & Biological Engineering & Computing 47(7):783-789. · 1.79 Impact Factor