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 TRUE FISP            fast imaging with steady precession 
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Constructive Interference Steady StateInfoSheet: - Sequences - 
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(CISS) This gradient echo sequence is a stimulated T2 echo. Two TrueFISP sequences are acquired with differing RF pulses and than combined for strong T2 Weighted high resolution 3D images.
These TrueFISP sequences are normally affected by dark phase dispersion bands, which are caused by patient induced local field inhomogeneities and made prominent by the relatively long TR used. The different excitation pulse regimes offset these bands in the 2 sequences. Combining the images results in a picture free of banding. The image combination is performed automatically after data collection, adding some time to the reconstruction process. The advantage of the 3D CISS sequence is its combination of high signal levels and extremely high spatial resolution.
Used for, e.g. inner ear, cranial nerves and cerebellum.
See also Steady State Free Precession.

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Pediatric and Adult Cochlear Implantation1
2003   by radiographics.rsnajnls.org    
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Dual Echo Steady StateInfoSheet: - Sequences - 
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(DESS) This sequence was originally known as FADE. It combines both the gradient echoes acquired in FISP and PSIF sequences in separate acquisition periods during a single interpulse interval. Phase encoding gradients are balanced to maintain the transverse steady state signals. The frequency encoding gradient is left on for the period of both the echoes, and is incompletely balanced to avoid dark banding artifacts otherwise associated with long TR fully balanced steady state sequences. The contrast of DESS is quite unique, true T2 or T1 contrast weighting is not possible. There is a strong fluid signal but fat is bright and other soft tissues appear similar to the short TR FISP image.
Used for, e.g. the joints, cartilage and the prostate. See Steady State Free Precession and Dual Echo Sequence.
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Coronary AngiographyMRI Resource Directory:
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(MRI-CA, MRCA) The noninvasive imaging of the coronary arteries using magnetic resonance imaging of the heart.
For cardiac MRI-CA, high performance machines are necessary with minimum 40mT/m and 300µsec slew rate.
2D and 3D acquisition are used for fast gradient echo sequences with techniques for minimizing cardiac and respiratory motion and suppressing the high signal of pericardial fat. The optimal sequences seem to be trueFISP, Balanced FFE or FIESTA with SMASH and SENSE techniques. Respiratory motion is minimized for 3D acquisitions by using respiratory gating, especially using navigator echoes (Navigator Technique) to track diaphragmatic and cardiac movement. Optimization of MR technique can provide mapping of long segments of the coronary arteries.
Blood pool agents are being applied to improve the reliability of coronary MR angiography. The major current clinical indication is the identification of coronary artery anomalies because the diagnostic accuracy's for identifying haemodynamically significant stenoses are variable depending of the image quality.
See also Magnetic Resonance Angiography, and Cardiac MRI.

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Further Reading:
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Role of Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Visualizing Coronary Arteries
Monday, 2 August 2004   by www.clinmedres.org    
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Graphic illustration
Tuesday, 12 February 2008   by www.theengineer.co.uk    
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Steady State Free PrecessionInfoSheet: - Sequences - 
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(SFP or SSFP) Steady state free precession is any field or gradient echo sequence in which a non-zero steady state develops for both components of magnetization (transverse and longitudinal) and also a condition where the TR is shorter than the T1 and T2 times of the tissue. If the RF pulses are close enough together, the MR signal will never completely decay, implying that the spins in the transverse plane never completely dephase. The flip angle and the TR maintain the steady state. The flip angle should be 60-90° if the TR is 100 ms, if the TR is less than 100 ms, then the flip angle for steady state should be 45-60°.
Steady state free precession is also a method of MR excitation in which strings of RF pulses are applied rapidly and repeatedly with interpulse intervals short compared to both T1 and T2. Alternating the phases of the RF pulses by 180° can be useful. The signal reforms as an echo immediately before each RF pulse;; immediately after the RF pulse there is additional signal from the FID produced by the pulse.
The strength of the FID will depend on the time between pulses (TR), the tissue and the flip angle of the pulse; the strength of the echo will additionally depend on the T2 of the tissue. With the use of appropriate dephasing gradients, the signal can be observed as a frequency-encoded gradient echo either shortly before the RF pulse or after it; the signal immediately before the RF pulse will be more highly T2 weighted. The signal immediately after the RF pulse (in a rapid series of RF pulses) will depend on T2 as well as T1, unless measures are taken to destroy signal refocusing and prevent the development of steady state free precession.
To avoid setting up a state of SSFP when using rapidly repeated excitation RF pulses, it may be necessary to spoil the phase coherence between excitations, e.g. with varying phase shifts or timing of the exciting RF pulses or varying spoiler gradient pulses between the excitations.
Steady state free precession imaging methods are quite sensitive to the resonant frequency of the material. Fluctuating equilibrium MR (see also FIESTA and DRIVE)and linear combination SSFP actually use this sensitivity for fat suppression. Fat saturated SSFP (FS-SSFP) use a more complex fat suppression scheme than FEMR or LCSSFP, but has a 40% lower scan time.
A new family of steady state free precession sequences use a balanced gradient, a gradient waveform, which will act on any stationary spin on resonance between 2 consecutive RF pulses and return it to the same phase it had before the gradients were applied.
This sequences include, e.g. Balanced Fast Field Echo - bFFE, Balanced Turbo Field Echo - bTFE, Fast Imaging with Steady Precession - TrueFISP and Balanced SARGE - BASG. See also FIESTA.
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Comparison of New Methods for Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Articular Cartilage(.pdf)
2002
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Fast Imaging with Steady PrecessionInfoSheet: - Sequences - 
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(TrueFISP) True fast imaging with steady state precession is a coherent technique that uses a fully balanced gradient waveform. The image contrast with TrueFISP is determined by T2*//T1 properties and mostly depending on TR. The speed and relative motion insensitivity of acquisition help to make the technique reliable, even in patients who have difficulty with holding their breath.
Recent advances in gradient hardware have led to a decreased minimum TR. This combined with improved field shimming capabilities and signal to noise ratio, has allowed TrueFISP imaging to become practical for whole-body applications. There's mostly T2* weighting. With the used ultrashort TR-times T1 weighting is almost impossible. One such application is cardiac cine MR with high myocardium-blood contrast. Spatial and temporal resolution can be substantially improved with this technique, but contrast on the basis of the ratio of T2* to T1 is not sufficiently high in soft tissues. By providing T1 contrast, TrueFISP could then document the enhancement effects of T1 shortening contrast agents. These properties are useful for the anatomical delineation of brain tumors and normal structures. With an increase in SNR ratio with minimum TR, TrueFISP could also depict the enhancement effect in myoma uteri. True FSIP is a technique that is well suited for cardiac MR imaging. The imaging time is shorter and the contrast between the blood and myocardium is higher than that of FLASH.
See Steady State Free Precession.

 
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Further Reading:
  Basics:
Accurate T1 Quantification Using a Breath-hold Inversion Recovery TrueFISP Sequence
2003   by rsna2003.rsna.org    
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