Pre- and postcontrast FLAIR MR imaging in the diagnosis of intracranial meningeal pathology

K Tsuchiya, S Katase, A Yoshino, J Hachiya
Radiation Medicine 2000, 18 (6): 363-8

PURPOSE: Few reports address the use of fluid-attenuated inversion-recovery (FLAIR) images of the brain in the diagnosis of extraaxial lesions. Our purpose was to assess the value of FLAIR images, including postcontrast ones, in the diagnosis of intracranial meningeal diseases.

METHODS: We reviewed precontrast (n=24) and postcontrast (n=20) FLAIR images obtained from 25 patients with infectious meningitis (n=13), carcinomatous meningitis or dissemination of primary brain tumor (n=7), dural metastasis (n=3), and others (n=2) in comparison with fast spin-echo T2-weighted and postcontrast T1-weighted images.

RESULTS: In lesion detectability, precontrast FLAIR images were significantly superior to fast spin-echo T2-weighted images but inferior to postcontrast T1-weighted images. There was no significant difference between postcontrast T1-weighted and FLAIR images.

CONCLUSION: Precontrast FLAIR images can substitute for conventional fast spin-echo T2-weighted images. Postcontrast FLAIR images have diagnostic potential equivalent to conventional postcontrast T1-weighted images.

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