An Introduction to Magnetic Resonance Imaging: MRI of the 1-D Patient

Anthony Wolbarst, University of Kentucky

Friday, October 3, 2008, 3:30pm

Spanos Auditorium

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MP3 (27 MB)

This seminar is part of the Jones Seminars on Science, Technology, and Society series

MRI is an invaluable tool for imaging the anatomy and assessing the physiology of soft tissues. It is also perhaps the most complex of the standard diagnostic imaging modalities, and the most difficult to explain to the uninitiated. Two 'pictures' are helpful when first presenting the subject. The 'spin-up, spin-down' picture can nicely address both the underlying phenomenon of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and the clinically-essential relaxation parameter known as T1. The 'classical' picture is necessary for dealing with the sequences of magnetic field gradients and RF pulses used in practice, and also when introducing the second clinical relaxation parameter, T2. This seminar will demonstrate a simple way to create T1-weighted MRI images, albeit of a 1D patient, with the spin-up, spin-down picture. After a brief break, for those who wish to stick around a bit longer, the story will continue with a look at the classical approach.

About the Speaker

Anthony Wolbarst received his Ph.D. in solid state physics from Dartmouth and an NIH Postdoctoral Fellowship in medical physics. He then served on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and the National Cancer Institute, and is Past President of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the American Association of Physicists in Medicine. He is author of two textbooks, Symmetry and Quantum Systems: An Introduction to Group Representations and Physics of Radiology, 2nd Edn, and is editor of Advances in Medical Physics, a biennial review series whose first two volumes were published in 2006 and 2008. He is now living happily with his wife Ling and daughter Zea on a farm 15 miles south of Lexington, KY., in the gorgeous heart of Bluegrass country, and teaching in the Department of Diagnostic Radiology in the University of Kentucky College of Medicine.