Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California


UCLA Previously Published Works bannerUCLA

Assessment of intramyocardial hemorrhage with dark-blood T2*-weighted cardiovascular magnetic resonance.



Intramyocardial hemorrhage (IMH) within myocardial infarction (MI) is associated with major adverse cardiovascular events. Bright-blood T2*-based cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) has emerged as the reference standard for non-invasive IMH detection. Despite this, the dark-blood T2*-based CMR is becoming interchangeably used with bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR in both clinical and preclinical settings for IMH detection. To date however, the relative merits of dark-blood T2*-weighted with respect to bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR for IMH characterization has not been studied. We investigated the diagnostic capacity of dark-blood T2*-weighted CMR against bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR for IMH characterization in clinical and preclinical settings.

Materials and methods

Hemorrhagic MI patients (n = 20) and canines (n = 11) were imaged in the acute and chronic phases at 1.5 and 3 T with dark- and bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR. Imaging characteristics (Relative signal-to-noise (SNR), Relative contrast-to-noise (CNR), IMH Extent) and diagnostic performance (sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, area-under-the-curve, and inter-observer variability) of dark-blood T2*-weighted CMR for IMH characterization were assessed relative to bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR.


At both clinical and preclinical settings, compared to bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR, dark-blood T2*-weighted images had significantly lower SNR, CNR and reduced IMH extent (all p < 0.05). Dark-blood T2*-weighted CMR also demonstrated weaker sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, and inter-observer variability compared to bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR (all p < 0.05). These observations were consistent across infarct age and imaging field strengths.


While IMH can be visible on dark-blood T2*-weighted CMR, the overall conspicuity of IMH is significantly reduced compared to that observed in bright-blood T2*-weighted images, across infarct age in clinical and preclinical settings at 1.5 and 3 T. Hence, bright-blood T2*-weighted CMR would be preferable for clinical use since dark-blood T2*-weighted CMR carries the potential to misclassify hemorrhagic MIs as non-hemorrhagic MIs.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View