, Volume 38, Issue 4, pp 360–366 | Cite as

Infratentorial brain maturation: a comparison of MRI at 0.5 and 1.5T

  • K. Hittmair
  • J. Kramer
  • T. Rand
  • G. Bernert
  • D. Wimberger
Paediatric Neuroradiology


Our purpose was to establish parameters for normal infratentorial brain maturation at 0.5 and 1.5T and to evaluate the field strength criteria for the assessment of infratentorial brain maturation with MRI. We examined 27 children with normal psychomotor development (3 days to 24 months) with a 1.5T system and 22 (4 days to 29 months) with a 0.5T system; standard T2-weighted spin-echo sequences (TR/TE 2500/90 ms at 1.5T and TR/TE 2200/90 ms at 0.5T) were obtained. The signal intensity of infratentorial anatomical structures compared to their surroundings was classified as high, isointense or low by three neuroradiologists. For anatomical structures with age-related contrast changes, the time of these changes was determined statistically for the 0.5T and 1.5T system independently. The delineation of the structures without age-related contrast changes at the two field strengths was compared using a χ2 test. Age-related contrast changed were found in the same anatomical structures (“marker sites”) at 0.5 and 1.5T. Generally, these changes were apparent in larger structures (pons, middle cerebellar peduncles, medulla, cerebellar folia, red nuclei, cerebral peduncles), with only slight field-strength-dependent differences in the time of the contrast changes. Contrast changes from high to isointense signal were observed slightly earlier at 0.5T and changes from isointense to low signal slightly later at 0.5T. The delineation of the smaller anatomical structures was significantly better at 1.5T but these structures did not show age-related contrast changes. The differences in the assessment of infratentorial brain maturation between 0.5 and 1.5T can be attributed to a lower signal-to-noise ratio at lower magnetic field strengths. These differences do not complicate temporal classification of the stage of infratentorial brain maturation using the same “marker sites” and the same temporal criteria at 0.5 or 1.5T. However, higher field strengths are preferable for the assessment of smaller structures with physiological signal differences; this may imply better detection of small lesions at higher field strengths.

Key words

Infratentorial brain maturation Magnetic resonance imaging 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Hittmair
    • 1
  • J. Kramer
    • 1
  • T. Rand
    • 2
  • G. Bernert
    • 3
  • D. Wimberger
    • 2
  1. 1.MR InstituteUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria
  2. 2.Department of Diagnostic RadiologyUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria
  3. 3.Department of PaediatricsUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria

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