PURPOSE - The effect of different types of exercise upon echo planar (EP) magnetic resonance (MR) images was examined during and after both dynamic and isometric dorsi-flexion exercises at matched workloads and durations.
METHODS - Healthy untrained subjects performed either dynamic exercise through a full range of motion and against a constant resistance or isometric exercise at the center of the range of motion and against a constant resistance at 25 or 70% their measured maximum voluntary contraction (MVC). EP MR images were acquired at 1.5 T every 4 s before (4 images), during (27 images), and after (29-65 images) exercise. A spin echo EP sequence was employed with TE = 30 ms, TR = 4000 ms, FOV = 20 x 40 cm, 64 x 128 matrix. The changes in proton transverse relaxation rate (deltaR2, [s(-1)]) relative to values obtained before exercise were calculated from individual images at different times during and after exercise.
RESULTS - At both 70 and 25% of MVC, the maximum deltaR2 after dynamic exercise (-8.38+/-0.32 s(-1) (70%), -6.47+/-1.23s(-1) (25%)) was significantly greater (P < or = 0.05) than after isometric exercise (-5.91+/-0.67 s(-1) (70%), -3.80+/-0.87s(-1) (25%)). Throughout the period that recovery was monitored, the recovery patterns of deltaR2 following isometric and dynamic exercise at both workloads remained parallel.
CONCLUSIONS - We conclude that exercise-induced changes in MR images are influenced not only by workload and exercise duration but also by the type of exercise, and we postulate that these differences result from the different physiological responses elicited by the different types of exercise.