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Keywords:

  • SSFP;
  • rapid imaging;
  • fat/water separation;
  • MR angiography;
  • musculoskeletal imaging

Abstract

Phase detection in fully refocused SSFP imaging has recently allowed fat/water separation without preparing the magnetization or using multiple acquisitions. Instead, it exploits the phase difference between fat and water at an echo time at the midpoint of the TR. To minimize the TR for improved robustness to B0 inhomogeneity, a 3D projection acquisition collecting two half echoes at the beginning and end of each excitation was previously implemented. Since echoes are not formed at the midpoint of the TR, this method still requires two passes of k-space for fat/water separation. A new method is presented to linearly combine the half echoes to separate fat and water in a single acquisition. Separation using phase detection provides superior contrast between fat and water voxels. Results from high resolution angiography and musculoskeletal studies with improved robustness to inhomogeneity and a 50% scan time reduction compared to the two pass method are presented. Magn Reson Med, 2005. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.