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Ultrafast Gradient Echo SequenceInfoSheet: - Sequences - 
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Ultrafast Gradient Echo Sequence Timing Diagram In simple ultrafast GRE imaging, TR and TE are so short, that tissues have a poor imaging signal and - more importantly - poor contrast except when contrast media enhanced (contrast enhanced angiography). Therefore, the magnetization is 'prepared' during the preparation module, most frequently by an initial 180° inversion pulse.
In the pulse sequence timing diagram, the basic ultrafast gradient echo sequence is illustrated. The 180° inversion pulse is executed one time (to the left of the vertical line), the right side represents the data collection period and is often repeated depending on the acquisition parameters.
See also Pulse Sequence Timing Diagram, there you will find a description of the components.
Ultrafast GRE sequences have a short TR,TE, a low flip angle and TR is so short that image acquisition lasts less than 1 second and typically less than 500 ms. Common TR: 3-5 msec, TE: 2 msec, and the flip angle is about 5°. Such sequences are often labeled with the prefix 'Turbo' like TurboFLASH, TurboFFE and TurboGRASS.
This allows one to center the subsequent ultrafast GRE data acquisition around the inversion time TI, where one of the tissues of interest has very little signal as its z-magnetization is passing through zero.
Unlike a standard inversion recovery (IR) sequence, all lines or a substantial segment of k-space image lines are acquired after a single inversion pulse, which can then together be considered as readout module. The readout module may use a variable flip angle approach, or the data acquisition may be divided into multiple segments (shots). The latter is useful particularly in cardiac imaging where acquiring all lines in a single segment may take too long relative to the cardiac cycle to provide adequate temporal resolution.
If multiple lines are acquired after a single pulse, the pulse sequence is a type of gradient echo echo planar imaging (EPI) pulse sequence.
See also Magnetization Prepared Rapid Gradient Echo (MPRAGE) and Turbo Field Echo (TFE).
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Fast Spin EchoForum -
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Fast Spin Echo Diagram

(FSE) In the pulse sequence timing diagram, a fast spin echo sequence with an echo train length of 3 is illustrated. This sequence is characterized by a series of rapidly applied 180° rephasing pulses and multiple echoes, changing the phase encoding gradient for each echo.
The echo time TE may vary from echo to echo in the echo train. The echoes in the center of the K-space (in the case of linear k-space acquisition) mainly produce the type of image contrast, whereas the periphery of K-space determines the spatial resolution. For example, in the middle of K-space the late echoes of T2 weighted images are encoded. T1 or PD contrast is produced from the early echoes.
The benefit of this technique is that the scan duration with, e.g. a turbo spin echo turbo factor / echo train length of 9, is one ninth of the time. In T1 weighted and proton density weighted sequences, there is a limit to how large the ETL can be (e.g. a usual ETL for T1 weighted images is between 3 and 7). The use of large echo train lengths with short TE results in blurring and loss of contrast. For this reason, T2 weighted imaging profits most from this technique.
In T2 weighted FSE images, both water and fat are hyperintense. This is because the succession of 180° RF pulses reduces the spin spin interactions in fat and increases its T2 decay time. Fast spin echo (FSE) sequences have replaced conventional T2 weighted spin echo sequences for most clinical applications. Fast spin echo allows reduced acquisition times and enables T2 weighted breath hold imaging, e.g. for applications in the upper abdomen.
In case of the acquisition of 2 echoes this type of a sequence is named double fast spin echo / dual echo sequence, the first echo is usually density and the second echo is T2 weighted image. Fast spin echo images are more T2 weighted, which makes it difficult to obtain true proton density weighted images. For dual echo imaging with density weighting, the TR should be kept between 2000 - 2400 msec with a short ETL (e.g., 4).
Other terms for this technique are:
Turbo Spin Echo
Rapid Imaging Spin Echo,
Rapid Spin Echo,
Rapid Acquisition Spin Echo,
Rapid Acquisition with Refocused Echoes

 
Images, Movies, Sliders:
 Lumbar Spine T2 FSE Sagittal  Open this link in a new window
    

Courtesy of  Robert R. Edelman
 MRI - Anatomic Imaging of the Foot  Open this link in a new window
    
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 Lumbar Spine T2 FSE Axial  Open this link in a new window
    

Courtesy of  Robert R. Edelman
 
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• View the DATABASE results for 'Fast Spin Echo' (31).Open this link in a new window

 
Further Reading:
  Basics:
MYELIN-SELECTIVE MRI: PULSE SEQUENCE DESIGN AND OPTIMIZATION
   by www.imaging.robarts.ca    
Advances in Magnetic Resonance Neuroimaging
Friday, 27 February 2009   by www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov    
  News & More:
New MR sequence helps radiologists more accurately evaluate abnormalities of the uterus and ovaries
Thursday, 23 April 2009   by www.eurekalert.org    
Spin echoes, CPMG and T2 relaxation - Introductory NMR & MRI from Magritek
2013   by www.azom.com    
Scanning the Abdomen
   by www.mrprotocols.com    
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