Quantification of traumatic meningeal injury using dynamic contrast enhanced (DCE) fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) imaging
Traumatic meningeal injury is a novel imaging marker of traumatic brain injury, which appears as enhancement of the dura on post-contrast T2-weighted FLAIR images, and is likely associated with inflammation of the meninges. Dynamic Contrast Enhanced MRI provides a better discrimination of abnormally perfused regions. A method to properly identify those regions is presented. Images of seventeen patients scanned within 96 hours of head injury with positive traumatic meningeal injury were normalized and aligned. The difference between the pre- and last post-contrast acquisitions was segmented and voxels in the higher class were spatially clustered. Spatial and morphological descriptors were used to identify the regions of enhancement: a) centroid; b) distance to the brain mask from external voxels; c) distance from internal voxels; d) size; e) shape. The method properly identified thirteen regions among all patients. The method failed in one case due to the presence of a large brain lesion that altered the mask boundaries. Most false detections were correctly rejected resulting in a sensitivity and specificity of 92.9% and 93.6%, respectively.