Christopher J François

University of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, Wisconsin, United States

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Publications (104)299.62 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Cross-sectional imaging of the heart utilizing computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been shown to be superior for the evaluation of cardiac morphology and systolic function in humans compared to echocardiography. The purpose of this prospective study was to test the effects of two different anesthetic protocols on cardiac measurements in 10 healthy beagle dogs using 64-multidetector row computed tomographic angiography (64-MDCTA), 3T magnetic resonance (MRI) and standard awake echocardiography. Both anesthetic protocols used propofol for induction and isoflourane for anesthetic maintenance. In addition, protocol A used midazolam/fentanyl and protocol B used dexmedetomedine as premedication and constant rate infusion during the procedure. Significant elevations in systolic and mean blood pressure were present when using protocol B. There was overall good agreement between the variables of cardiac size and systolic function generated from the MDCTA and MRI exams and no significant difference was found when comparing the variables acquired using either anesthetic protocol within each modality. Systolic function variables generated using 64-MDCTA and 3T MRI were only able to predict the left ventricular end diastolic volume as measured during awake echocardiogram when using protocol B and 64-MDCTA. For all other systolic function variables, prediction of awake echocardiographic results was not possible (P = 1). Planar variables acquired using MDCTA or MRI did not allow prediction of the corresponding measurements generated using echocardiography in the awake patients (P = 1). Future studies are needed to validate this approach in a more varied population and clinically affected dogs. © 2015 American College of Veterinary Radiology.
    Veterinary Radiology &amp Ultrasound 06/2015; DOI:10.1111/vru.12269 · 1.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pulmonary arteries (PAs) distend to accommodate increases in cardiac output. PA distensibility protects the right ventricle (RV) from excessive increases in pressure. Loss of PA distensibility plays a critical role in the fatal progression of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) towards RV failure. However, it is unclear how PA distensibility is distributed across the generations of PA branches, mainly because of the lack of appropriate in vivo methods to measure distensibility of vessels other than the large, conduit PAs. In this study we propose a novel approach to assess the distensibility of individual PA branches. The metric of PA distensibility we used is the slope of the stretch ratio-pressure relationship. To measure distensibility, we combined invasive measurements of mean PA pressure with angiographic imaging of the PA network of six healthy female dogs. Stacks of 2D images of the PAs, obtained from either contrast enhanced magnetic resonance angiography (CE-MRA) or computed tomography digital subtraction angiography (CT-DSA), were used to reconstruct 3D surface models of the PA network, from the first bifurcation down to the sixth generation of branches. For each branch of the PA, we calculated radial and longitudinal stretch between baseline and a pressurized state obtained via acute embolization of the pulmonary vasculature. Our results indicated that large and intermediate PA branches have a radial distensibility consistently close to 2%/mmHg. Our axial distensibility data, albeit affected by larger variability, suggested that the PAs distal to the first generation may not significantly elongate in vivo, presumably due to spatial constraints. Results from both angiographic techniques were comparable to data from established phase-contrast (PC) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and ex vivo mechanical tests, which can only be used in the first branch generation. Our novel method can be used to characterize PA distensibility in PAH patients undergoing clinical right heart catheterization in combination with MR imaging.
    Journal of Biomechanical Engineering 04/2015; 137(4). DOI:10.1115/1.4029578 · 1.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Thoracic outlet syndrome is a clinical entity characterized by compression of the neurovascular bundle, and may be associated with additional findings such as venous thrombosis, arterial stenosis, or neurologic symptoms. The goal of imaging is to localize the site of compression, the compressing structure, and the compressed organ or vessel, while excluding common mimics. A literature review is provided of current indications for diagnostic imaging, with discussion of potential limitations and benefits of the respective modalities. The ACR Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed every 3 years by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and review include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer-reviewed journals and the application of a well-established consensus methodology (modified Delphi) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures by the panel. In those instances in which evidence is lacking or not definitive, expert opinion may be used to recommend imaging or treatment. In this document, we provided guidelines for use of various imaging modalities for assessment of thoracic outlet syndrome. Copyright © 2015 American College of Radiology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Journal of the American College of Radiology: JACR 03/2015; 12(5). DOI:10.1016/j.jacr.2015.01.016 · 2.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Portal and mesenteric hemodynamics is greatly altered in portal hypertension patients. This study utilizes 4D flow magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to visualize and quantify changes in abdominal hemodynamics in patients with portal hypertension undergoing meal challenge. Twelve portal hypertension patients and six healthy subjects participated in the study. Baseline MRI was acquired after 5 hours of fasting. Postmeal MRI was obtained 20 minutes after subjects ingested EnSure Plus (574 mL). Imaging was performed at 3T using 4D flow MRI with an undersampled radial acquisition. Flow measurements were performed blinded to subject status (fasting/meal). Flow values for each vessel were compared before and after the meal challenge using paired Student's t-tests (P < 0.05). After meal challenge, significant increases in blood flow were observed in supraceliac aorta, portal vein, superior mesenteric vein, and artery in both groups (P < 0.05). In patients, hepatic artery (P = 0.001) and splenic vein (P = 0.045) flow decreased while azygos vein flow (P = 0.002) increased. Portal venous flow regulation to adjust the increasing mesenteric venous flow after a meal challenge may be impaired in patients with cirrhosis. The ability to comprehensively quantify the hemodynamic response of the abdominal vasculature to a meal challenge using 4D flow MRI reveals the potential of this technique to noninvasively characterize portal hypertension hemodynamics. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging 03/2015; DOI:10.1002/jmri.24886 · 2.79 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Validation of a new single breath-hold, three-dimensional, cine balanced steady-state free precession (3D cine bSSFP) cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) sequence for left ventricular function. CMR examinations were performed on fifteen patients and three healthy volunteers on a clinical 1.5T scanner using a two-dimensional (2D) cine balanced SSFP CMR sequence (2D cine bSSFP) followed by an investigational 3D cine bSSFP pulse sequence acquired within a single breath hold. Left ventricular end diastolic volume (LVEDV), end systolic volume (LVESV), ejection fraction (LVEF), and myocardial mass were independently segmented on a workstation by two experienced radiologists. Blood pool to myocardial contrast was evaluated in consensus using a Likert scale. Bland-Altman analysis was used to compare these quantitative and nominal measurements for the two sequences. The average acquisition time was significantly shorter for the 3D cine bSSFP than for 2D cine bSSFP (0.36 ± 0.03 vs. 8.5 ± 2.3 min) p = 0.0002. Bland-Altman analyses [bias and (limits of agreement)] of the data derived from these two methods revealed that the LVEF 0.9 % (-4.7, 6.4), LVEDV 4.9 ml (-23.0, 32.8), LVESV -0.2 ml (-22.4, 21.9), and myocardial mass -0.4 g (-23.8, 23.0) were not significantly different. There was excellent intraclass correlation for intra-observer variability (0.981, 0.989, 0.997, 0.985) and inter-observer variability (0.903, 0.954, 0.970, 0.842) for LVEF, LVEDV, LVESV, and myocardial mass respectively. 3D cine bSSFP allows for accurate single breath-hold volumetric cine CMR which enables substantial improvements in scanner time efficiency without sacrificing diagnostic accuracy.
    The International Journal of Cardiovascular Imaging 02/2015; 31(4). DOI:10.1007/s10554-015-0615-0 · 2.32 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To develop and demonstrate a breathheld 3D radial ultrashort echo time (UTE) acquisition to visualize co-registered lung perfusion and vascular structure. Nine healthy dogs were scanned twice at 3 Tesla (T). Contrast-enhanced pulmonary perfusion scans were acquired with a temporally interleaved three-dimensional (3D) radial UTE (TE = 0.08 ms) sequence in a breathhold (1 s time frames over a 33 s breathhold). The 3D breathheld volume was reconstructed into time-resolved perfusion datasets, and a composite vascular structure dataset. For structural comparison, a 5 min respiratory-gated 3D radial UTE scan was acquired. Data were analyzed by quantitative metrics and radiologist scoring. Appropriate time-course of contrast was seen in all subjects. Right ventricle to aorta transit times were 7.4 ± 2.0 s. Relative lung enhancement was a factor of 8.4 ± 1.5. Radiologist scoring showed similarly excellent visualization of the pulmonary arteries to the subsegmental level in breathheld (94% of cases) and respiratory-gated (100% of cases) acquisitions (P = 0.33) despite the aggressive under sampling in the breathheld scan. Similarly, differentiation of lung tissue and airways was achieved by both acquisition methods. A time-resolved 3D radial UTE sequence for simultaneous imaging of pulmonary perfusion and co-registered vascular structure is feasible.J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging 01/2015; 41(1). DOI:10.1002/jmri.24520 · 2.79 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ventricular kinetic energy measurements may provide a novel imaging biomarker of declining ventricular efficiency in patients with repaired tetralogy of Fallot. Our purpose was to assess differences in ventricular kinetic energy with 4-dimensional flow magnetic resonance imaging between patients with repaired tetralogy of Fallot and healthy volunteers. Cardiac magnetic resonance, including 4-dimensional flow magnetic resonance imaging, was performed at rest in 10 subjects with repaired tetralogy of Fallot and 9 healthy volunteers using clinical 1.5T and 3T magnetic resonance imaging scanners. Right and left ventricular kinetic energy (KERV and KELV), main pulmonary artery flow (QMPA), and aortic flow (QAO) were quantified using 4-dimensional flow magnetic resonance imaging data. Right and left ventricular size and function were measured using standard cardiac magnetic resonance techniques. Differences in peak systolic KERV and KELV in addition to the QMPA/KERV and QAO/KELV ratios between groups were assessed. Kinetic energy indices were compared with conventional cardiac magnetic resonance parameters. Peak systolic KERV and KELV were higher in patients with repaired tetralogy of Fallot than in healthy volunteers (P = .0002 and P = .0002, respectively). The QMPA/KERV and QAO/KELV ratios were lower in patients with repaired tetralogy of Fallot than in healthy volunteers (P = .0002). QMPA/KERV and QAO/KELV were weakly correlated to ventricular size and function. Greater ventricular kinetic energy is necessary to generate flow in the pulmonary and aortic circulations in repaired tetralogy of Fallot. Quantification of ventricular kinetic energy in patients with repaired tetralogy of Fallot is a new observation. Future studies are needed to determine whether changes in ventricular kinetic energy can provide earlier evidence of ventricular dysfunction and guide future medical and surgical interventions. Copyright © 2015 The American Association for Thoracic Surgery. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 12/2014; 149(5). DOI:10.1016/j.jtcvs.2014.11.085 · 3.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To develop and evaluate a free-breathing chemical-shift-encoded (CSE) spoiled gradient-recalled echo (SPGR) technique for whole-heart water-fat imaging at 3 Tesla (T). We developed a three-dimensional (3D) multi-echo SPGR pulse sequence with electrocardiographic gating and navigator echoes and evaluated its performance at 3T in healthy volunteers (N = 6) and patients (N = 20). CSE-SPGR, 3D SPGR, and 3D balanced-SSFP with chemical fat saturation were compared in six healthy subjects with images evaluated for overall image quality, level of residual artifacts, and quality of fat suppression. A similar scoring system was used for the patient datasets. Images of diagnostic quality were acquired in all but one subject. CSE-SPGR performed similarly to SPGR with fat saturation, although it provided a more uniform fat suppression over the whole field of view. Balanced-SSFP performed worse than SPGR-based methods. In patients, CSE-SPGR produced excellent fat suppression near metal. Overall image quality was either good (7/20) or excellent (12/20) in all but one patient. There were significant artifacts in 5/20 clinical cases. CSE-SPGR is a promising technique for whole-heart water-fat imaging during free-breathing. The robust fat suppression in the water-only image could improve assessment of complex morphology at 3T and in the presence of off-resonance, with additional information contained in the fat-only image. Magn Reson Med, 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Magnetic Resonance in Medicine 09/2014; 72(3). DOI:10.1002/mrm.24982 · 3.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed every 3 years by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and review include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer-reviewed journals and the application of a well-established consensus methodology (modified Delphi) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures by the panel. In those instances in which evidence is lacking or not definitive, expert opinion may be used to recommend imaging or treatment. In this document we provided guidelines for use of various imaging modalities for assessment of nontraumatic aortic diseases.
    Journal of Thoracic Imaging 08/2014; DOI:10.1097/RTI.0000000000000107 · 1.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Erratum to: Abdom Imaging (2013) 38:714–719 DOI 10.1007/s00261-012-9975-2In the original publication of the article, references were cited incorrectly which has been corrected with this erratum.In “Summary of Literature Review” under subheading “Pathophysiology”, the last sentence of the first paragraph states, “In the chronic setting, mesenteric ischemia is almost always caused by severe atherosclerotic disease, with rare causes including fibromuscular displasia, median arcuate ligament syndrome, and vasculitis [4].” The stated reference [4] is incorrect. The correct reference is Sreenarasimhaiah J (2005) Chronic mesenteric ischemia. Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol 19(2):283–295.In “Summary of Literature Review” under subheading “Pathophysiology”, the second sentence of the second paragraph states, “Acute mesenteric artery thrombosis is typically associated with chronic atherosclerotic disease and, given its more insidious course, a well-developed collateral circulation is commonly
    Abdominal Imaging 08/2014; 39(4). DOI:10.1007/s00261-014-0179-9 · 1.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Companion animals are routinely anesthetized or heavily sedated for cardiac MRI studies, however effects of varying anesthetic protocols on cardiac function measurements are incompletely understood. The purpose of this prospective study was to compare effects of two anesthetic protocols (Protocol A: Midazolam, fentanyl; Protocol B: Dexmedetomidine) on quantitative and qualitative blood flow values measured through the aortic, pulmonic, mitral, and tricuspid valves using two-dimensional phase contrast magnetic resonance imaging (2D PC MRI) in healthy dogs. Mean flow per heartbeat values through the pulmonary artery (Qp) and aorta (Qs) were compared to right and left ventricular stroke volumes (RVSV, LVSV) measured using a reference standard of 2D Cine balanced steady-state free precession MRI. Pulmonary to systemic flow ratio (Qp/Qs) was also calculated. Differences in flow and Qp/Qs values generated using 2D PC MRI did not differ between the two anesthetic protocols (P = 1). Mean differences between Qp and RVSV were 3.82 ml/beat (95% limits of agreement: 3.62, −11.26) and 1.9 ml/beat (−7.86, 11.66) for anesthesia protocols A and B, respectively. Mean differences between Qs and LVSV were 1.65 ml/beat (−5.04, 8.34) and 0.03 ml/beat (−4.65, 4.72) for anesthesia protocols A and B, respectively. Mild tricuspid or mitral reflux was seen in 2/10 dogs using 2D PC MRI. No aortic or pulmonic insufficiency was observed. Findings from the current study indicated that these two anesthetic protocols yield similar functional measures of cardiac blood flow using 2D PC MRI in healthy dogs. Future studies in clinically affected patients are needed.
    Veterinary Radiology &amp Ultrasound 08/2014; 56(2). DOI:10.1111/vru.12200 · 1.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A low relative area change (RAC) of the proximal pulmonary artery (PA) over the cardiac cycle is a good predictor of mortality from right ventricular failure in patients with pulmonary hypertension (PH). The relationship between RAC and local mechanical properties of arteries, which are known to stiffen in acute and chronic PH, is not clear, however. In this study, we estimated elastic moduli of three PAs (MPA, LPA and RPA: main, left and right PAs) at the physiological state using mechanical testing data and correlated these estimated elastic moduli to RAC measured in vivo with both phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging (PC-MRI) and M-mode echocardiography (on RPA only). We did so using data from a canine model of acute PH due to embolization to assess the sensitivity of RAC to changes in elastic modulus in the absence of chronic PH-induced arterial remodeling. We found that elastic modulus increased with embolization-induced PH, presumably a consequence of increased collagen engagement, which corresponds well to decreased RAC. Furthermore, RAC was inversely related to elastic modulus. Finally, we found MRI and echocardiography yielded comparable estimates of RAC. We conclude that RAC of proximal PAs can be obtained from either MRI or echocardiography and a change in RAC indicates a change in elastic modulus of proximal PAs detectable even in the absence of chronic PH-induced arterial remodeling. The correlation between RAC and elastic modulus of proximal PAs may be useful for prognoses and to monitor the effects of therapeutic interventions in patients with PH.
    Journal of Biomechanics 07/2014; 47(12). DOI:10.1016/j.jbiomech.2014.07.013 · 2.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Heart rate is a major factor influencing diagnostic image quality in computed tomographic coronary artery angiography (MDCT-CA), with an ideal heart rate of 60–65 beats/min in humans. The purpose of this prospective study was to compare effects of two different clinically applicable anesthetic protocols on cardiovascular parameters and 64-MDCT-CA quality in 10 healthy dogs. Scan protocols and bolus volumes were standardized. Image evaluations were performed in random order by a board-certified veterinary radiologist who was unaware of anesthetic protocols used. Heart rate during image acquisition did not differ between protocols (P = 1), with 80.6 ± 7.5 bpm for protocol A and 79.2 ± 14.2 bpm for protocol B. Mean blood pressure was significantly higher (P > 0.05) using protocol B (protocol A 62.9 ± 9.1 vs. protocol B 72.4 ± 15.9 mmHg). The R-R intervals allowing for best depiction of individual coronary artery segments were found in the end diastolic period and varied between the 70% and 95% interval. Diagnostic quality was rated excellent, good, and moderate in the majority of the segments evaluated, with higher scores given for more proximal segments and lower for more distal segments, respectively. Blur was the most commonly observed artifact and mainly affected the distal segments. No significant differences were identified between the two protocols for optimal reconstruction interval, diagnostic quality and measured length individual segments, or proximal diameter of the coronary arteries (P = 1). Findings indicated that, when used with a standardized bolus volume, both of these anesthetic protocols yielded diagnostic quality coronary 64-MDCT-CA exams in healthy dogs.
    Veterinary Radiology &amp Ultrasound 07/2014; 56(1). DOI:10.1111/vru.12185 · 1.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: PurposeTo compare pulmonary artery flow using Cartesian and radially sampled four-dimensional flow-sensitive (4D flow) MRI at two institutions.Methods Nineteen healthy subjects and 17 pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) subjects underwent a Cartesian 4D flow acquisition (institution 1) or a three-dimensional radial acquisition (institution 2). The diameter, peak systolic velocity (Vmax), peak flow (Qmax), stroke volume (SV), and wall shear stress (WSS) were computed in two-dimensional analysis planes at the main, right, and left pulmonary artery. Interobserver variability, interinstitutional differences, flow continuity, and the hemodynamic measurements in healthy and PAH subjects were assessed.ResultsVmax, Qmax, SV, and WSS at all locations were significantly lower (P < 0.05) in PAH compared with healthy subjects. The limits of agreement were 0.16 m/s, 2.4 L/min, 10 mL, and 0.31 N/m2 for Vmax, Qmax, SV, and WSS, respectively. Differences between Qmax and SV using Cartesian and radial sequences were not significant. Plane placement and acquisition exhibited isolated, site-based differences between Vmax and WSS.Conclusions4D flow MRI was used to detect differences in pulmonary artery hemodynamics for PAH subjects. Flow and WSS in healthy and PAH subject cohorts were similar between Cartesian- and radial-based 4D flow MRI acquisitions with minimal interobserver variability. Magn Reson Med, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Magnetic Resonance in Medicine 06/2014; 73(5). DOI:10.1002/mrm.25326 · 3.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Truncation artefact (Gibbs ringing) causes central signal drop within vessels in pulmonary magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) that can be mistaken for emboli, reducing diagnostic accuracy for pulmonary embolism (PE). We propose a quantitative approach to differentiate truncation artefact from PE. Twenty-eight patients who underwent pulmonary computed tomography angiography (CTA) for suspected PE were recruited for pulmonary MRA. Signal intensity drops within pulmonary arteries that persisted on both arterial-phase and delayed-phase MRA were identified. The percent signal loss between the vessel lumen and central drop was measured. CTA served as the reference standard for presence of pulmonary emboli. A total of 65 signal intensity drops were identified on MRA. Of these, 48 (74 %) were artefacts and 17 (26 %) were PE, as confirmed by CTA. Truncation artefacts had a significantly lower median signal drop than PE on both arterial-phase (26 % [range 12-58 %] vs. 85 % [range 53-91 %]) and delayed-phase MRA (26 % [range 11-55 %] vs. 77 % [range 47-89 %]), p < 0.0001 for both. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analyses revealed a threshold value of 51 % (arterial phase) and 47 % signal drop (delayed phase) to differentiate between truncation artefact and PE with 100 % sensitivity and greater than 90 % specificity. Quantitative signal drop is an objective tool to help differentiate truncation artefact and pulmonary embolism in pulmonary MRA. aEuro cent Inexperienced readers may mistake truncation artefacts for emboli on pulmonary MRA aEuro cent Pulmonary emboli have non-uniform signal drop aEuro cent 51 % (arterial phase) and 47 % (delayed phase) cut-off differentiates truncation artefact from PE aEuro cent Quantitative signal drop measurement enables more accurate pulmonary embolism diagnosis with MRA.
    European Radiology 05/2014; 24(8). DOI:10.1007/s00330-014-3219-5 · 4.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the utility of hyperpolarized He-3 MRI for detecting regional lung ventilated volume (VV ) changes in response to exercise challenge and leukotriene inhibitor montelukast, human subjects with exercise induced bronchoconstriction (EIB) were recruited. This condition is described by airway constriction following exercise leading to reduced forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) coinciding with ventilation defects on hyperpolarized He-3 MRI. Thirteen EIB subjects underwent spirometry and He-3 MRI at baseline, postexercise, and postrecovery at multiple visits. On one visit montelukast was given and on two visits placebo was given. Regional VV was calculated in the apical/basilar dimension, in the anterior/posterior dimension, and for the entire lung volume. The whole lung VV was used as an end-point and compared with spirometry. Postchallenge FEV1 dropped with placebo but not with treatment, while postchallenge VV dropped more with placebo than treatment. Sources of variability for VV included region (anterior/posterior), scan, and treatment. VV correlated with FEV1/ forced vital capacity (FVC) and forced expiratory flow between 25 and 75% of FVC and showed gravitational dependence after exercise challenge. A paradigm testing the response of ventilation to montelukast revealed both a whole-lung and regional response to exercise challenge and therapy in EIB subjects. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging 05/2014; 39(5). DOI:10.1002/jmri.24272 · 2.79 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To demonstrate the use of temporal averaging with radial 4D flow magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to reduce scan time for quantification and visualization of flow in the portal circulation. This study compared phase-contrast MR angiography, 3D flow visualization, and flow quantification of portal venous hemodynamics of time-averaged vs. time-resolved reconstructions. Time-resolved 3D radial ("4D") phase contrast data were acquired from 44 subjects (15 volunteers, 29 cirrhosis patients) at 3T. Images were reconstructed as a fully sampled time-resolved reconstruction and multiple time-averaged reconstructions using a variable number of acquired projections to simulate different scan times. Images from each reconstruction were evaluated to compare the quality of anatomical and hemodynamic visualization. Time-averaged reconstructions outperformed time-resolved reconstructions for flow quantification (3.9 ± 3.1% error vs. 5.2 ± 4.4% error), average streamline length (47 ± 7 mm vs. 34 ± 15 mm), and visualization quality (average grading = 3.7 ± 0.5 vs. 2.2 ± 0.9). In addition, excellent visualization quality was achieved using fewer acquired projections. Reductions in scan time can be achieved through time-averaging while still providing excellent visualization and quantification in the portal circulation. Scan time reduction of up to 70%-80% was possible for high-quality assessment, translating into a reduction in scan time from 10-12 minutes to ∼3-4 minutes. J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2013;. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging 04/2014; 39(4). DOI:10.1002/jmri.24233 · 2.79 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to quantify right (RV) and left (LV) ventricular function, pulmonary artery flow (QP), tricuspid valve regurgitation velocity (TRV), and aorta flow (QS) from a single 4D flow cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) (time-resolved three-directionally motion encoded CMR) sequence in a canine model of acute thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (PH). Acute PH was induced in six female beagles by microbead injection into the right atrium. Pulmonary arterial (PAP) and pulmonary capillary wedge (PCWP) pressures and cardiac output (CO) were measured by right heart catheterization (RHC) at baseline and following induction of acute PH. Pulmonary vascular resistance (PVRRHC) was calculated from RHC values of PAP, PCWP and CO (PVRRHC = (PAP-PCWP)/CO). Cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) was performed on a 3 T scanner at baseline and following induction of acute PH. RV and LV end-diastolic (EDV) and end-systolic (ESV) volumes were determined from both CINE balanced steady-state free precession (bSSFP) and 4D flow CMR magnitude images. QP, TRV, and QS were determined from manually placed cutplanes in the 4D flow CMR flow-sensitive images in the main (MPA), right (RPA), and left (LPA) pulmonary arteries, the tricuspid valve (TRV), and aorta respectively. MPA, RPA, and LPA flow was also measured using two-dimensional flow-sensitive (2D flow) CMR. Biases between 4D flow CMR and bSSFP were 0.8 mL and 1.6 mL for RV EDV and RV ESV, respectively, and 0.8 mL and 4 mL for LV EDV and LV ESV, respectively. Flow in the MPA, RPA, and LPA did not change after induction of acute PAH (p = 0.42-0.81). MPA, RPA, and LPA flow determined with 4D flow CMR was significantly lower than with 2D flow (p < 0.05). The correlation between QP/TRV and PVRRHC was 0.95. The average QP/QS was 0.96 +/- 0.11. Using both magnitude and flow-sensitive data from a single 4D flow CMR acquisition permits simultaneous quantification of cardiac function and cardiopulmonary hemodynamic parameters important in the assessment of PH.
    Journal of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance 03/2014; 16(1):23. DOI:10.1186/1532-429X-16-23 · 5.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pulmonary hypertension is a condition of varied etiology, commonly associated with poor clinical outcome. Patients are categorized on the basis of pathophysiological, clinical, radiologic, and therapeutic similarities. Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is often diagnosed late in its disease course, with outcome dependent on etiology, disease severity, and response to treatment. Recent advances in quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) allow for better initial characterization and measurement of the morphologic and flow-related changes that accompany the response of the heart-lung axis to prolonged elevation of pulmonary arterial pressure and resistance and provide a reproducible, comprehensive, and noninvasive means of assessing the course of the disease and response to treatment. Typical features of PAH occur primarily as a result of increased pulmonary vascular resistance and the resultant increased right ventricular (RV) afterload. Several MRI-derived diagnostic markers have emerged, such as ventricular mass index, interventricular septal configuration, and average pulmonary artery velocity, with diagnostic accuracy similar to that of Doppler echocardiography. Furthermore, prognostic markers have been identified with independent predictive value for identification of treatment failure. Such markers include large RV end-diastolic volume index, low left ventricular end-diastolic volume index, low RV ejection fraction, and relative area change of the pulmonary trunk. MRI is ideally suited for longitudinal follow-up of patients with PAH because of its noninvasive nature and high reproducibility and is advantageous over other biomarkers in the study of PAH because of its sensitivity to change in morphologic, functional, and flow-related parameters. Further study on the role of MRI image based biomarkers in the clinical environment is warranted.
    Journal of thoracic imaging 03/2014; 29(2):68-79. DOI:10.1097/RTI.0000000000000079 · 1.49 Impact Factor
  • Randi Drees, Christopher J François, Jimmy H Saunders
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    ABSTRACT: Computed tomographic angiography (CTA) of the thoracic cardiovascular system is offering new diagnostic opportunities in companion animal patients with the increasing availability of multidetector-row computed tomographic (MDCT) units in veterinary facilities. Optimal investigation of the systemic, pulmonary, and coronary circulation provides unique challenges due to the constant movement of the heart, the small size of several of the structures of interest, and the dependence of angiographic quality on various contrast bolus design and patient factors. Technical and practical aspects of thoracic cardiovascular CTA are reviewed in light of the currently available veterinary literature and future opportunities given utilizing MDCT in companion animal patients with suspected thoracic cardiovascular disease.
    Veterinary Radiology &amp Ultrasound 02/2014; 55(3). DOI:10.1111/vru.12149 · 1.26 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

708 Citations
299.62 Total Impact Points


  • 2008–2015
    • University of Wisconsin–Madison
      • Department of Radiology
      Madison, Wisconsin, United States
  • 2003–2009
    • Northwestern University
      • • Department of Radiology
      • • Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
      Evanston, Illinois, United States
  • 2007
    • Northwestern Memorial Hospital
      Chicago, Illinois, United States
  • 2005
    • Loyola University Medical Center
      • Department of Radiology
      Maywood, Illinois, United States