Non-invasive measurement of oxygen saturation in the spinal vein using SWI: Quantitative evaluation under conditions of physiological and caffeine load
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Susceptibility-weighted imaging (SWI) has been used for quantitative and non-invasive measurement of blood oxygen saturation in the brain. In this study, we used SWI for quantitative measurement of oxygen saturation in the spinal vein to look for physiological- or caffeine-induced changes in venous oxygenation. SWI measurements were obtained for 5 healthy volunteers using 1.5-T MR units, under 1) 3 kinds of physiological load (breath holding, Bh; hyperventilation, Hv; and inspiration of highly concentrated oxygen, Ox) and 2) caffeine load. Oxygen saturation in the anterior spinal vein (ASV) was calculated. We evaluated changes in oxygen saturation induced by physiological load. We also evaluated the time-course of oxygen saturation after caffeine intake. For the physiological load measurements, the average oxygen saturation for the 5 subjects was significantly lower in Hv (0.75) and significantly higher in Bh (0.84) when compared with control (0.80). There was no significant difference between Ox (0.81) and control. Oxygen saturation gradually decreased after caffeine intake. The average values of oxygen saturation were 0.79 (0 min), 0.76 (20 min), 0.74 (40 min), and 0.73 (60 min), respectively. We demonstrated a significant difference in oxygen saturation at 40 and 60 min after caffeine intake when compared with 0 min. In conclusion, we demonstrated the feasibility of using SWI for non-invasive measurement of oxygen saturation in the spinal vein. We showed changes in oxygen saturation under physiological as well as caffeine load and suggest that this method is a useful tool for the clinical evaluation of spinal cord oxygenation.
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