3D 23Na MRI of human skeletal muscle at 7 Tesla: initial experience
The midcalf muscles of eight patients who had peripheral arterial occlusive disease were evaluated by exercise MRI before and after bypass surgery or percutaneous transluminal angioplasty. MRI showed a high intensity of these muscles, especially the posterior muscles, after exercise in all patients before intervention. The mean T2 relaxation time was maximal immediately after exercise (tibialis anterior, T2 = 30.8 ms; soleus, T2 = 36.2 ms; gastrocnemius, T2 = 32.8 ms) and then gradually decreased to the preexercise level. The difference in the T2 relaxation time of the soleus between immediately after exercise and at rest was smaller along with improvement of ankle pressure indices (API) after successful intervention (mean T2 difference: 4.91 and 0.72 ms (p < .001); mean API: 0.54 and 0.86 (p < .001) before and after intervention, respectively). The mean resting midcalf T2 relaxation time was significantly higher after intervention (tibialis anterior, T2 = 28.4 and 29.5 ms (p < .05); soleus, T2 = 31.4 and 32.9 ms (p < .05); gastrocnemius, T2 = 29.5 and 31.1 ms (p < .01) before and after intervention, respectively). T2 relaxation time may be a useful quantitative parameter in peripheral arterial occlusive disease as well as in other muscle studies.