Purpose: The homeostasis of intracranial pressure (ICP) is of paramount importance for maintaining normal brain function. A noninvasive technique capable of making direct measurements of ICP currently does not exist. MR elastography (MRE) is capable of noninvasively measuring brain tissue stiffness in vivo, and may act as a surrogate to measure ICP. The objective of this study was to investigate the impact of changing ICP on brain stiffness using MRE in a swine model. Methods: Baseline MRE measurements were obtained, and then catheters were surgically placed into the left and right lateral ventricles of three animals. ICP was systematically increased over the range of 0 to 55 millimeters mercury (mmHg), and stiffness measurements were made using brain MRE at vibration frequencies of 60 hertz (Hz), 90 Hz, 120 Hz, and 150 Hz. Results: A significant linear correlation between stiffness and ICP in the cross-subject comparison was observed for all tested vibrational frequencies (P ≤ 0.01). The 120 Hz (0.030 ± 0.004 kilopascal (kPa)/mmHg, P < 0.0001) and 150 Hz (0.031 ± 0.008 kPa/mmHg, P = 0.01) vibrational frequencies had nearly identical slopes, which were approximately two- to three-fold higher than the 90 Hz (0.017 ± 0.002 kPa/mmHg, P < 0.0001) and 60 Hz (0.009 ± 0.002 kPa/mmHg, P = 0.001) slopes, respectively. Conclusion: In this study, MRE demonstrated the potential for noninvasive measurement of changes in ICP. Magn Reson Med 79:1043–1051, 2018.
- brain stiffness
- intracranial pressure
- magnetic resonance elastography
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging