Is liver lesion characterisation by simplified IVIM DWI also feasible at 3.0 T?

  • Petra MürtzEmail author
  • C. C. Pieper
  • M. Reick
  • A. M. Sprinkart
  • H. H. Schild
  • W. A. Willinek
  • G. M. Kukuk
Magnetic Resonance



To evaluate simplified intravoxel incoherent motion (IVIM) diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) for liver lesion characterisation at 3.0 T and to compare it with 1.5 T.


3.0-T DWI data from a respiratory-gated MRI sequence with b = 0, 50, 250, and 800 s/mm2 were analysed in 116 lesions (78 patients) and 27 healthy livers. Apparent diffusion coefficient ADC = ADC(0,800) and IVIM-based parameters D1′ = ADC(50,800), D2′ = ADC(250,800), f1′ = f(0,50,800), f2′ = f(0,250,800), D*′ = D*(0,50,250,800), ADClow = ADC(0,50), and ADCdiff = ADClow-D2′ were calculated voxel-wise and analysed on per-patient basis. Results were compared with those of 173 lesions (110 patients) and 40 healthy livers at 1.5 T.


Focal nodular hyperplasias were best discriminated from all other lesions by f1′ and haemangiomas by D1′ with an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.993 and 1.000, respectively. For discrimination between malignant and benign lesions, ADC was best suited (AUC of 0.968). The combination of D1′ and f1′ correctly identified more lesions as malignant or benign than the ADC (99.1% vs 88.8%). Discriminatory power for differentiating malignant from benign lesions tended to be higher at 3.0 T than at 1.5 T.


Simplified IVIM is suitable for lesion characterisation at 3.0 T with a trend of superior diagnostic accuracy for discriminating malignant from benign lesions compared with 1.5 T.

Key Points

• Simplified IVIM is also suitable for liver lesion characterisation at 3.0 T.

• Excellent accuracy was reached for discriminating malignant from benign lesions.

• The acquisition of only three b-values (0, 50, 800 s/mm 2 ) is required.


Diffusion magnetic resonance imaging Carcinoma, hepatocellular Liver neoplasms Haemangioma Focal nodular hyperplasia 



Apparent diffusion coefficient


Area under the curve


Cholangiocellular carcinoma


Diffusion-weighted imaging


Focal nodular hyperplasia


Hepatocellular carcinoma


Intravoxel incoherent motion


Reference tissue


Region of interest



The authors state that this work has not received any funding.

Compliance with ethical standards


The scientific guarantor of this publication is Petra Mürtz.

Conflict of interest

The authors of this manuscript declare no relationships with any companies, whose products or services may be related to the subject matter of the article.

Statistics and biometry

No complex statistical methods were necessary for this paper.

Informed consent

Written informed consent was waived by the Institutional Review Board.

Ethical approval

Institutional Review Board approval was obtained.

Study subjects or cohorts overlap

Some study subjects or cohorts have been previously reported in Mürtz P, Sprinkart AM, Reick M, et al (2018) Accurate IVIM model-based liver lesion characterisation can be achieved with only three b-value DWI. Eur Radiol. doi:


• retrospective

• diagnostic study

• performed at one institution


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Copyright information

© European Society of Radiology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Petra Mürtz
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • C. C. Pieper
    • 1
  • M. Reick
    • 1
  • A. M. Sprinkart
    • 1
  • H. H. Schild
    • 1
  • W. A. Willinek
    • 1
  • G. M. Kukuk
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyUniversity of BonnBonnGermany
  2. 2.Radiologische Klinik der Universität BonnBonnGermany

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