Assessment of liver fat quantification in the presence of iron

Mark Bydder, Masoud Shiehmorteza, Takeshi Yokoo, Sebastian Sugay, Michael S. Middleton, Olivier Girard, Michael E. Schroeder, Tanya Wolfson, Anthony Gamst, Claude Sirlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


This study assesses the stability of magnetic resonance liver fat measurements against changes in T2* due to the presence of iron, which is a confound for accurate quantification. The liver T2* was experimentally shortened by intravenous infusion of a super paramagnetic iron oxide contrast agent. Low flip angle multiecho gradient echo sequences were performed before, during and after infusion. The liver fat fraction (FF) was calculated in co-localized regions-of-interest using T2* models that assumed no decay, monoexponential decay and biexponential decay. Results show that, when T2* was neglected, there was a strong underestimation of FF and with monoexponential decay there was a weak overestimation of FF. Curve-fitting using the biexponential decay was found to be problematic. The overestimation of FF may be due to remaining deficiencies in the model, although is unlikely to be important for clinical diagnosis of steatosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)767-776
Number of pages10
JournalMagnetic Resonance Imaging
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 2010


  • Fat quantification
  • Iron
  • Liver
  • SPIO

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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