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Hemodynamics of cerebral veins analyzed by 2d and 4d flow mri and ultrasound in healthy volunteers and patients with multiple sclerosis

: Schuchardt, F.F.; Kaller, C.P.; Strecker, C.; Lambeck, J.; Wehrum, T.; Hennemuth, A.; Anastasopoulos, C.; Mader, I.; Harloff, A.


Journal of magnetic resonance imaging 51 (2020), Nr.1, S.205-217
ISSN: 1053-1807
Fraunhofer MEVIS ()

Hemodynamic alterations of extracranial veins are considered an etiologic factor in multiple sclerosis (MS). However, ultrasound and MRI studies could not confirm a pathophysiological link. Because of technical challenges using standard diagnostics, information about the involvement of superficial intracranial veins in proximity to the affected brain in MS is scarce.
To comprehensively investigate the hemodynamics of intracranial veins and of the venous outflow tract in MS patients and controls.
Study Type
Twenty‐eight patients with relapsing‐remitting MS (EDSS1.9 ± 1.1; range 0–3) and 41 healthy controls.
Field Strength/Sequence
3T/2D phase‐contrast and time‐resolved 4D flow MRI, extra‐ and transcranial sonography.
Hemodynamics within the superficial and deep intracranial venous system and outflow tract including the internal, basal, and great cerebral vein, straight, superior sagittal, and transverse sinuses, internal jugular and vertebral veins. Sonography adhered to the chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI) criteria.
Statistical Tests
Multivariate repeated measure analysis of variance, Student's two‐sample t‐test, chi‐square, Fisher's exact test; separate analysis of the entire cohort and 32 age‐ and sex‐matched participants.
Multi‐ and univariate main effects of the factor group (MS patient vs. control) and its interactions with the factor vessel position (lower flow within dorsal superior sagittal sinus in MS, 3 ± 1 ml/s vs. 3.8 ± 1 ml/s; P < 0.05) in the uncontrolled cohort were attributable to age‐related differences. Age‐ and sex‐matched pairs showed a different velocity gradient in a single segment within the deep cerebral veins (great cerebral vein, vena cerebri magna [VCM] 7.6 ± 1.7 cm/s; straight sinus [StS] 10.5 ± 2.2 cm/s vs. volunteers: VCM 9.2 ± 2.3 cm/s; StS 10.2 ± 2.3 cm/s; P = 0.01), reaching comparable velocities instantaneously downstream. Sonography was not statistically different between groups.
Data Conclusion
Consistent with previous studies focusing on extracranial hemodynamics, our comprehensive analysis of intracerebral venous blood flow did not reveal relevant differences between MS patients and controls.