PURPOSE - To translate and evaluate an in vivo magnetic resonance (MR) imaging protocol for quantitative mapping of collagen-bound and pore water concentrations in cortical bone that involves relaxation-selective ultrashort echo time (UTE) methods.
MATERIALS AND METHODS - All HIPAA-compliant studies were performed with institutional review board approval and written informed consent. UTE imaging sequences were implemented on a clinical 3.0-T MR imaging unit and were used for in vivo imaging of bound and pore water in cortical bone. Images of the lower leg and wrist were acquired in five volunteers each (lower leg: two men and three women aged 24, 24, 49, 30, and 26 years; wrist: two men and three women aged 31, 23, 25, 24, and 26 years) to generate bound and pore water concentration maps of the tibia and radius. Each volunteer was imaged three times, and the standard error of the measurements at the region-of-interest (ROI) level was computed as the standard deviation across studies, pooled across volunteers and ROIs.
RESULTS - Quantitative bound and pore water maps in the tibia and radius, acquired in 8-14 minutes, had per-voxel signal-to-noise ratios of 18 (bound water) and 14 (pore water) and inter-study standard errors of approximately 2 mol (1)H per liter of bone at the ROI level.
CONCLUSION - The results of this study demonstrate the feasibility of quantitatively mapping bound and pore water in vivo in human cortical bone with practical human MR imaging constraints.
(©) RSNA, 2015 An earlier incorrect version of this article appeared online. This article was corrected on July 24, 2015.