Purpose: The aim of this work is to investigate the feasibility of accelerating phase contrast magnetic resonance angiography (PC-MRA) by the fast imaging method of simplified skipped phase encoding and edge deghosting with array coil enhancement (S-SPEED-ACE). Methods: The parallel imaging method of skipped phase encoding and edge deghosting with array coil enhancement (SPEED-ACE) is simplified for imaging sparse objects like phase contrast MRA. This approach is termed S-SPEED-ACE in which k-space is sparsely sampled with skipped phase encoding at every Nth step using multiple receiver coils simultaneously. The sampled data are then Fourier transformed into a set of ghosted images, each with N-fold aliasing ghosts. Given signal sparseness of MRA, the ghosted images are modeled with a single-layer structure, in which the most dominant ghost within the potentially overlapped ghosts at each pixel is selected to represent the signal of that pixel. The single-layer model is analogous to that used in maximum-intensity-projection (MIP) that selects only the brightest signal even when there are overlapped vessels. With an algorithm based on a least-square-error solution, a deghosted image is obtained, along with a residual map for quality control. In this way, S-SPEED-ACE partially samples k-space using multiple receiver coils in parallel, and yields a deghosted image with an acceleration factor of N. Without full central k-space sampling and differential filtering, S-SPEED-ACE achieves further scan time reduction with a more straightforward reconstruction. In this work, S-SPEED-ACE is demonstrated to accelerate a computer simulated PC-MRA and a real human 3D PC-MRA, which was acquired using a clinical 1.5 T scanner on a healthy volunteer. Results: Images are reconstructed by S-SPEED-ACE to achieve an undersampling factor of up to 8.3 with four receiver coils. The reconstructed images generally have comparable quality as that of the reference images reconstructed from full k-space data. Maximum-intensity-projection images generated from the reconstructed images also demonstrated to be consistent as those from the reference images. Conclusions: By taking advantage of signal sparsity naturally existing in the data, SPEED-ACE was simplified and its efficiency was improved. The feasibility of the proposed S-SPEED-ACE is demonstrated in this work with simulated sampling of an actual 3D head PC-MRA scan.
- fast imaging
- parallel imaging
- sparse object
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging