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Dynamic magnetic resonance imaging in the assessment of chronic medical nephropathies with impaired renal function

  • Urogenital radiology
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We examined the value of dynamic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in chronic renal disease with renal insufficiency. In 33 consecutive patients (21 vascular nephropathy, 12 glomerular nephropathy) MRI was performed using a 1.5-T unit and a body coil, with SE T1-weighted (TR/TE = 600/19 ms) and dynamic TFFE T1-weighted sequences (TR/TE = 12/5 ms, flip angle = 25 °) after manual bolus injection (via a cubital vein) of 0.1 mmol/kg Gd-DTPA-BMA. Morphological evaluation was performed in unblinded fashion by three radiologists, evaluating renal size, cortical thickness, and corticomedullary differentiation. Functional analysis was performed by one reviewer. Time-signal intensity curves, peak intensity value (P), time to peak intensity (T), and the P/T ratio were obtained at the cortex, medulla, and pyelocaliceal system of each kidney. The relationship of these parameters to serum creatinine and with creatinine clearance was investigated. A good correlation between morphological features of the kidneys and serum creatinine values was found. Morphological findings could not distinguish between vascular and glomerular nephropathies. A statistically significant correlation (P <0.01) between cortical P, cortical P/T, medullary P, and serum creatinine and creatinine clearance was found. A significant correlation (P <0.01) was also found between cortical T, medullary P/T, T of the excretory system, and creatinine clearance. The cortical T value was significantly higher (P <0.01) in vascular nephropathy than in glomerular nephropathy. Thus in patients with chronic renal failure dynamic MRI shows both morphological and functional changes. Morphological changes are correlated with the degree of renal insufficiency and not with the type of nephropathy; the functional changes seem to differ in vascular from glomerular nephropathies.

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Received: 5 March 1999; Revised: 28 June 1999; Accepted: 9 August 1999

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Dalla-Palma, L., Panzetta, G., Pozzi-Mucelli, R. et al. Dynamic magnetic resonance imaging in the assessment of chronic medical nephropathies with impaired renal function. Eur Radiol 10, 280–286 (2000).

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