Background: Respiratory gating is generally recommended in 4D flow MRI of the heart to avoid blurring and motion artifacts. Recently, a novel automated contact-less camera-based respiratory motion sensor has been introduced. Purpose: To compare camera-based respiratory gating (CAM) with liver-lung-navigator-based gating (NAV) and no gating (NO) for whole-heart 4D flow MRI. Study Type: Retrospective. Subjects: Thirty two patients with a spectrum of cardiovascular diseases. Field Strength/Sequence: A 3T, 3D-cine spoiled-gradient-echo-T1-weighted-sequence with flow-encoding in three spatial directions. Assessment: Respiratory phases were derived and compared against each other by cross-correlation. Three radiologists/cardiologist scored images reconstructed with camera-based, navigator-based, and no respiratory gating with a 4-point Likert scale (qualitative analysis). Quantitative image quality analysis, in form of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and liver-lung-edge (LLE) for sharpness and quantitative flow analysis of the valves were performed semi-automatically. Statistical Tests: One-way repeated measured analysis of variance (ANOVA) with Wilks's lambda testing and follow-up pairwise comparisons. Significance level of P ≤ 0.05. Krippendorff's-alpha-test for inter-rater reliability. Results: The respiratory signal analysis revealed that CAM and NAV phases were highly correlated (C = 0.93 ± 0.09, P < 0.01). Image scoring showed poor inter-rater reliability and no significant differences were observed (P ≥ 0.16). The image quality comparison showed that NAV and CAM were superior to NO with higher SNR (P = 0.02) and smaller LLE (P < 0.01). The quantitative flow analysis showed significant differences between the three respiratory-gated reconstructions in the tricuspid and pulmonary valves (P ≤ 0.05), but not in the mitral and aortic valves (P > 0.05). Pairwise comparisons showed that reconstructions without respiratory gating were different in flow measurements to either CAM or NAV or both, but no differences were found between CAM and NAV reconstructions. Data Conclusion: Camera-based respiratory gating performed as well as conventional liver-lung-navigator-based respiratory gating. Quantitative image quality analysis showed that both techniques were equivalent and superior to no-gating-reconstructions. Quantitative flow analysis revealed local flow differences (tricuspid/pulmonary valves) in images of no-gating-reconstructions, but no differences were found between images reconstructed with camera-based and navigator-based respiratory gating. Level of Evidence: 3. Technical Efficacy: Stage 2.
- 4D flow MRI
- respiratory gating