Single breath-hold 3D measurement of left atrial volume using compressed sensing cardiovascular magnetic resonance and a non-model-based reconstruction approach
Background: Left atrial (LA) dilatation is associated with a large variety of cardiac diseases. Current cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) strategies to measure LA volumes are based on multi-breath-hold multi-slice acquisitions, which are time-consuming and susceptible to misregistration. Aim: To develop a time-efficient single breath-hold 3D CMR acquisition and reconstruction method to precisely measure LA volumes and function. Methods: A highly accelerated compressed-sensing multi-slice cine sequence (CS-cineCMR) was combined with a non-model-based 3D reconstruction method to measure LA volumes with high temporal and spatial resolution during a single breath-hold. This approach was validated in LA phantoms of different shapes and applied in 3 patients. In addition, the influence of slice orientations on accuracy was evaluated in the LA phantoms for the new approach in comparison with a conventional model-based biplane area-length reconstruction. As a reference in patients, a self-navigated high-resolution whole-heart 3D dataset (3D-HR-CMR) was acquired during mid-diastole to yield accurate LA volumes. Results: Phantom studies. LA volumes were accurately measured by CS-cineCMR with a mean difference of -4.73 +/-; 1.75 ml (-8.67 +/-; 3.54 %, r2 = 0.94). For the new method the calculated volumes were not significantly different when different orientations of the CS-cineCMR slices were applied to cover the LA phantoms. Long-axis "aligned" vs "not aligned" with the phantom long-axis yielded similar differences vs the reference volume (-4.87 +/-; 1.73 ml vs -4.45 +/-; 1.97 ml, p = 0.67) and short-axis "perpendicular" vs "not-perpendicular" with the LA long-axis (-4.72 +/-; 1.66 ml vs -4.75 +/-; 2.13 ml; p = 0.98). The conventional bi-plane area-length method was susceptible for slice orientations (p = 0.0085 for the interaction of "slice orientation" and "reconstruction technique", 2-way ANOVA for repeated measures). To use the 3D-HR-CMR as the reference for LA volumes in patients, it was validated in the LA phantoms (mean difference: -1.37 +/-; 1.35 ml, -2.38 +/-; 2.44 %, r2 = 0.97). Patient study: The CS-cineCMR LA volumes of the mid-diastolic frame matched closely with the reference LA volume (measured by 3D-HR-CMR) with a difference of -2.66 +/-; 6.5 ml (3.0 % underestimation; true LA volumes: 63 ml, 62 ml, and 395 ml). Finally, a high intra-and inter-observer agreement for maximal and minimal LA volume measurement is also shown. Conclusions: The proposed method combines a highly accelerated single-breathhold compressed-sensing multi-slice CMR technique with a non-model-based 3D reconstruction to accurately and reproducibly measure LA volumes and function.