Use of 3.0-T MRI for stereotactic radiosurgery planning for treatment of brain metastases: A single-institution retrospective review

Paul A. Saconn, Edward G. Shaw, Michael D. Chan, Sarah E. Squire, Annette Johnson, Kevin P. McMullen, Stephen B. Tatter, Thomas L. Ellis, James Lovato, J. Daniel Bourland, Kenneth E. Ekstrand, Allan F. Deguzman, Michael T. Munley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Purpose: To investigate the efficacy of 3.0-T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for detecting brain metastases for stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) planning. Methods and Materials: All adult patients scheduled for SRS treatment for brain metastases at our institution between October 2005 and January 2008 were eligible for analysis. All patients underwent radiosurgery treatment planning 3.0-T MRI on the day of scheduled radiosurgery and a diagnostic 1.5-T MRI in the days or weeks prior to radiosurgery for comparison. Both scans were interpreted by neuroradiologists who reported their findings in the radiology reports. We performed a retrospective review of the radiology reports to determine the number of brain metastases identified using each MRI system. Results: Of 254 patients scheduled for treatment from October 2005 to January 2008, 138 patients had radiology reports that explicitly described the number of metastases identified on both scans. With a median interval of 17 days (range, 1-82) between scans, the number of metastases detected using 1.5-T MRI system ranged from 1 to 5 and from 1 to 8 using the 3.0 T-MRI system. Twenty-two percent of patients were found to have a greater number of metastases with the 3.0 T-MRI system. The difference in number of metastases detected between the two scans for the entire cohort ranged from 0 to 6. Neither histology (p = 0.52 by chi-sq test) nor time between scans (p = 0.62 by linear regression) were significantly associated with the difference in number of metastases between scans. Conclusions: The 3.0-T MRI system appears to be superior to a 1.5-T MRI system for detecting brain metastases, which may have significant implications in determining the appropriate treatment modality. Our findings suggest the need for a prospectively designed study to further evaluate the use of a 3.0 T-MRI system for stereotactic radiosurgery planning in the treatment of brain metastases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1142-1146
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 4 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Brain metastases
  • MRI
  • Radiosurgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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