Multi-parametric MRI is increasingly used for prostate cancer detection. Improving information from current sequences, such as T2-weighted and diffusion-weighted (DW) imaging, and additional sequences, such as magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST), may enhance the performance of multi-parametric MRI. The majority of these techniques are sensitive to B-field variations and may result in image distortions including signal pile-up and stretching (echo planar imaging (EPI) based DW-MRI) or unwanted shifts in the frequency spectrum (CEST and MRS). Our aim is to temporally and spatially characterize B-field changes in the prostate. Ten male patients are imaged using dual-echo gradient echo sequences with varying repetitions on a 3T scanner to evaluate the temporal B-field changes within the prostate. A phantom is also imaged to consider no physiological motion. The spatial B-field variations in the prostate are reported as B-field values (Hz), their spatial gradients (Hz/mm) and the resultant distortions in EPI based DW-MRI images (b-value = 0 s/mmand two oppositely phase encoded directions). Over a period of minutes, temporal changes in B-field values were ≤19 Hz for minimal bowel motion and ≥30 Hz for large motion. Spatially across the prostate, the B-field values had an interquartile range of ≤18 Hz (minimal motion) and ≤44 Hz (large motion). The B$_0$-field gradients were between -2 and 5 Hz/mm (minimal motion) and 2 to 12 Hz/mm (large motion). Overall, B-field variations can affect DW, MRS and CEST imaging of the prostate.
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PubMed