Thoracic Aorta Displacement and Strain Analysis Using Spiral Cine DENSE MRI
Valdman, Melissa Elizabeth
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Aneurysms are the 18th most common cause of death in the United States, and patients with connective tissue disorders are at particularly high risk of developing these lesions. Understanding more about the structural and biological properties that play a role in the formation of aneurysms could be vital to their early detection and prevention. In this study, we compare displacement and strain data from six patients who have connective tissue disorders (e.g., Marfan Syndrome, Loeys-Dietz Syndrome, or Ehlers-Danlos) and eight patients with healthy aortas using spiral cine DENSE MRI in order to differentiate the mechanical properties of healthy vs. diseased aortas and to understand the properties associated with different stages of aneurysm formation. We predict that patients with connective tissue disorders will demonstrate larger total displacement and strain along the aortic wall. These results will help differentiate the mechanical properties of healthy aortas and aortas associated with connective tissue disorders, as well as understand the properties associated with different stages of aneurysm formation.