Multi-detector row CT of the small bowel: peak enhancement temporal window--initial experience.
PURPOSE: To prospectively determine quantitatively and qualitatively the timing of maximal enhancement of the normal small-bowel wall by using contrast material-enhanced multi-detector row computed tomography (CT). MATERIALS AND METHODS: This HIPAA-compliant study was approved by the institutional review board. After information on radiation risk was given, written informed consent was obtained from 25 participants with no history of small-bowel disease (mean age, 58 years; 19 men) who had undergone single-level dynamic CT. Thirty seconds after the intravenous administration of contrast material, a serial dynamic acquisition, consisting of 10 images obtained 5 seconds apart, was performed. Enhancement measurements were obtained over time from the small-bowel wall and the aorta. Three independent readers qualitatively assessed small-bowel conspicuity. Quantitative and qualitative data were analyzed during the arterial phase, the enteric phase (which represented peak small-bowel mural enhancement), and the venous phase. Statistical analysis included paired Student t test and Wilcoxon signed rank test with Bonferroni correction. A P value less than .05 was used to indicate a significant difference. RESULTS: The mean time to peak enhancement of the small-bowel wall was 49.3 seconds +/- 7.7 (standard deviation) and 13.5 seconds +/- 7.6 after peak aortic enhancement. Enhancement values were highest during the enteric phase (P < .05). Regarding small-bowel conspicuity, images obtained during the enteric phase were most preferred qualitatively; there was a significant difference between the enteric and arterial phases (P < .001) but not between the enteric and venous phases (P = .18). CONCLUSION: At multi-detector row CT, peak mural enhancement of the normal small bowel occurs on average about 50 seconds after intravenous administration of contrast material or 14 seconds after peak aortic enhancement.
Schindera, ST; Nelson, RC; DeLong, DM; Jaffe, TA; Merkle, EM; Paulson, EK; Thomas, J
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