Quantitative MRI of the spine
We have employed several quantitative MRI techniques to study intervertebral disc degeneration. Perfusion and diffusion in disc endplates is being studied using dynamic contrast enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI); changes in discs are studied using DTI, Ultra-short TE and T1rho imaging techniques. The goal is to explore the pathophysiology of spinal disc degeneration and the mechanisms that lead to this ailment. Our preliminary findings show that the blood perfusion deficiencies in disc endplates are closely associated with degeneration.