Comparative evaluation of 2D time-of-flight and 3D elliptic centric contrast-enhanced MR venography in patients with presumptive cerebral venous and sinus thrombosis


Dr Florian Masuhr, Department of Neurology, Charité Campus Mitte, Universitary Medicine Berlin, Schumannstrasse 20/21, 10117 Berlin, Germany (tel.: +49 30 450 560 102; fax: +49 30 450 560 932; e-mail:


We retrospectively evaluated an elliptic centric ordered 3D (ec 3D) magnetic resonance venography (MRV) technique in comparison to 2D time-of-flight (2D TOF) MRV in patients with presumptive cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST). Twenty-five patients (mean age 40.6 ± 16.5 years) with presumptive CVST underwent cerebral MRI including 2D TOF and ec 3D MRV. Radiologic findings and clinical outcome were correlated. MRV studies were evaluated by two neuroradiologists in a blinded manner for image quality, assessment of various sinus, internal cerebral veins (ICV), vein of Labbé and Galen (VL/VG) as well as for additional imaging procedures required. Sensitivity/specificity of ec 3D MRV amounted to 85.7%/97.2% as compared with 2D TOF 71.4%/55.6 %. Ec 3D MRV performed superior in terms of image quality as well as assessment of all sinus and veins except for the straight sinus. Additional imaging procedures were less often required in ec 3D MRV studies (28% vs. 66% for 2D TOF MRV; P < 0.001). Interobserver agreement was significantly increased by using ec 3D MRV (93.1% vs. 70.9% of readings). The results of our study provide additional evidence for the superiority of ec 3D compared with 2D TOF MR venography for the diagnosis or exclusion of acute CVST in daily clinical practice.