In vitro imaging of kidney stones using ultra-short echo-time magnetic resonance

With the development of ultra-short echo-time (UTE) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) sequences, adequate imaging of kidney stones becomes possible. In this work, we compare UTE MRI to dual-energy computed tomography (DECT) for imaging 114 kidney stones, representing different stonetypes and sizes in phantom experiments using different surrounding materials and scan setups.

We further investigate the capability of imaging different stone types inside pig kidneys using the abdomen/pelvis body surface coil, which is one step closer to in vivo MR imaging of kidney stones. The results show that MRI has the potential for imaging stones of different types and sizes. If successful for in-vivo imaging, the developed technique could be a valuable alternative to gold standard CT for imaging patients who may be more vulnerable to radiation exposure.

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