(12) United States Patent ao) Patent No.: us 6,377,835 Bi
Schoenberg et al. (45) Date of Patent: Apr. 23,2002
(54) METHOD FOR SEPARATING ARTERIES AND VEINS IN 3D MR ANGIOGRAPHIC IMAGES USING CORRELATION ANALYSIS
(75) Inventors: Stefan O. Schoenberg, Kandel;
Michael Bock, Heidelberg; Michael V.
Knopp, Sandhausen; Gerhard Laub,
Erlangen, all of (DE)
(73) Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft, Munich (DE)
( * ) Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this patent is extended or adjusted under 35 U.S.C. 154(b) by 0 days.
(21) Appl. No.: 09/651,748
(22) Filed: Aug. 30, 2000
(51) Int. C I. A61B 5/05
(52) U.S. CI 600/419; 600/420; 324/306;
(58) Field of Search 600/419, 420,
600/410; 324/306, 307, 309
(56) References Cited
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
5,115,812 A * 5/1992 Sano et al 324/306
5,417,213 A * 5/1995 Prince 600/419
5,830,143 A * 11/1998 Mistretta et al 600/420
"Processing Strategies for Time-Course Data Sets in Functional MRI of the Human Brain," Bandettini et al., Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, vol. 30 (1993), pp. 161-173. "Functional MRA Combining 2D MR DSA and Correlation Analysis," Strecker et al., Proceedings ISMRM, Seventh Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, 1999, p. 484.
In a 3D magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) method, a region of interest, containing a major pulmonary vessel, is defined in an examination subject, and the subject is injected with a contrast agent bolus and a number of 3D magnetic resonance angiography data sets are obtained from the examination subject before, during and after arrival of the bolus in the region of interest. A slice from each of the data sets is selected which contains the region of interest, and an average region of interest signal as a function of time is determined and stored as a reference time curve. In the respective selected slices, a signal-time curve is identified and each signal-time curve is cross-correlated with the reference time curve. The cross-correlation results are used to form a new three-dimensional data set containing arterial and venous correlation maps. Maximum intensity projections are computed from the arterial and venous correlation maps for producing a visualized image of the pulmonary vasculature in the region of interest, the arteries and veins in the respective maximum intensity projections being clearly distinguishable.
6 Claims, 4 Drawing Sheets