Determination of Electric Conductivity and Local SAR Via B1 Mapping
The electric conductivity can potentially be used as an additional diagnostic parameter, e.g., in tumor diagnosis. Moreover, the electric conductivity, in connection with the electric field, can be used to estimate the local SAR distribution during MR measurements. In this study, a new approach, called electric properties tomography (EPT) is presented. It derives the patient's electric conductivity, along with the corresponding electric fields, from the spatial sensitivity distributions of the applied RF coils, which are measured via MRI. Corresponding numerical simulations and initial experiments on a standard clinical MRI system underline the principal feasibility of EPT to determine the electric conductivity and the local SAR. In contrast to previous methods to measure the patient's electric properties, EPT does not apply externally mounted electrodes, currents, or RF probes, thus enhancing the practicality of the approach. Furthermore, in contrast to previous methods, EPT circumvents the solution of an inverse problem, which might lead to significantly higher spatial image resolution.