European Radiology

, Volume 17, Issue 6, pp 1385–1393 | Cite as

Extracranial applications of diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging

Magnetic Resonance


Diffusion-weighted MRI has become more and more popular in the last couple of years. It is already an accepted diagnostic tool for patients with acute stroke, but is more difficult to use for extracranial applications due to technical challenges mostly related to motion sensitivity and susceptibility variations (e.g., respiration and air-tissue boundaries). However, thanks to the newer technical developments, applications of body DW-MRI are starting to emerge. In this review, we aim to provide an overview of the current status of the published data on DW-MRI in extracranial applications. A short introduction to the physical background of this promising technique is provided, followed by the current status, subdivided into three main topics, the functional evaluation, tissue characterization and therapy monitoring.


Diffusion-weighted MRI Functional evaluation Magnetic resonance imaging Therapy monitoring Tissue characterization 



We would like to thank Dr. Anwar R. Padhani of the Mount Vernon Cancer Centre, London, for his many helpful comments on this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Radiology, Neuroradiology and Nuclear MedicineUniversity Hospital of BernBernSwitzerland
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyUniversity Hospitals LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

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