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Effect of combination and number of b values in IVIM analysis with post-processing methodology: simulation and clinical study

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To investigate the effect of number and combination of b values used on the accuracy of estimated Intravoxel Incoherent Motion (IVIM) parameters using simulation and clinical data.

Materials and methods

Simulations with seven combinations of b values were performed for 4, 6, 8, and 13 numbers of b values with six different values of D, D*, and f parameters. Two methodologies were implemented for IVIM analysis: standard biexponential model (BE) and biexponential model with total variation penalty function (BE + TV). Clinical data set of six patients with prostate cancer was retrospectively analyzed using 4, 8, and 13 b values.


BE + TV method showed lesser error and lower variability in simulation and clinical data, respectively. 8 and 13 b values showed good agreement in the values of parameters estimated with high correlation coefficient (ρ = 0.83–0.93). Clinical data showed high spurious noise with lower b values [4 b values leading to high coefficient of variation (CV); however, substantially, lower CV was observed with 8 and 13 b values].


BE model with TV penalty function is robust to combination of b values used for IVIM analysis. Combination of 8 b values provided a reasonably good accuracy in IVIM parameters.

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Authors sincerely thank Ms. Esha Badiya Kayal for providing the codes of BE + TV algorithm and her support and mentorship in processing. The authors would like to acknowledge support staffs of IIT Delhi, New Delhi and AIIMS Delhi, New Delhi. A.V.M was supported with research fellowship, funded by Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.

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Authors and Affiliations



AVM: study conception and design, acquisition of data, analysis and interpretation of data, drafting of manuscript, and critical revision. CJD: acquisition of data and analysis and interpretation of data. KK: analysis and interpretation of data. FC: analysis and interpretation of data, drafting of manuscript, critical revision. AM: study conception and design, analysis and interpretation of data, drafting of manuscript, critical revision.

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Correspondence to Amit Mehndiratta.

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Malagi, A.V., Das, C.J., Khare, K. et al. Effect of combination and number of b values in IVIM analysis with post-processing methodology: simulation and clinical study. Magn Reson Mater Phy 32, 519–527 (2019).

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