BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Conventional MR imaging techniques cannot produce optimal images of bone structures because bone has little water and a very short T2 life span. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical feasibility of skull MR imaging using the zero TE sequence in patients with head trauma by assessing its diagnostic image quality and quantitative measurement compared with CT images. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirteen enrolled patients with head trauma were assessed using brain CT and skull MR imaging. Image quality was graded on a 5-point Likert scale to compare the 2 modalities. To evaluate quantitative analyses between the 2 imaging modalities, we measured skull thickness and normalized bone tissue signal. Interobserver reliability was assessed using weighted statistics and the intraclass correlation coefficient. RESULTS: Both imaging techniques clearly depicted skull fractures in all 13 patients. The mean scores for skull MR imaging and CT were 4.65 0.56 and 4.73 0.45 (P .157), respectively, with substantial interobserver agreement (P .05). The 2 imaging modalities showed no difference in skull thickness (P .092) and had good correlation (r 2 0.997). The mean value of normalized bone tissue signal among the 3 layers of the skull was relatively consistent (P .401) with high interobserver agreement (P .001). CONCLUSIONS: Zero TE skull MR imaging has diagnostic image quality comparable with that of CT images. It also provides consistent results on the quantitative measurement of cortical bone with CT images.
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