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Abstract: TH-PO748

Stiffness Imaging in Native Kidneys by Magnetic Resonance Elastography: A Feasibility Study

Session Information

  • Bioengineering
    October 25, 2018 | Location: Exhibit Hall, San Diego Convention Center
    Abstract Time: 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Category: Bioengineering

  • 300 Bioengineering


  • Patel, Nayana, University of Colorado, Aurora, Colorado, United States
  • Gitomer, Berenice Y., Div. Renal Diseases and Hypertension,, Aurora, Colorado, United States
  • George, Diana, University of Colorado, Aurora, Colorado, United States
  • Nowak, Kristen L., University of Colorado Denver: Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, Colorado, United States
  • Chonchol, Michel, University of Colorado, Aurora, Colorado, United States

Development of kidney fibrosis results in loss of kidney function among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Kidney biopsy is the standard method for fibrosis detection in native or transplanted kidneys and there is not currently a non-invasive technique to detect kidney fibrosis. We undertook a pilot study in healthy individuals of different ages to explore the feasibility of performing magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) to determine the range of stiffness in healthy kidneys.


Six healthy subjects with eGFR > 60 ml/min/1.73m2 were included in the study. Kidney imaging was performed on a Siemens 3T MR scanner. Following acquisition of scout images for location of the kidneys, MRE was performed with patients in the prone position using 60Hz frequency with 2 different driver positions. In method 1 driver was placed in the midline overlying the spine just below the ribs and one image of both kidneys at the level of the hilum in the axial plane and one image through the long axis of each kidney obtained in the sagittal plane (3 images). In method 2 the driver was placed off midline on the flank to acquire images in the axial and sagittal planes a total of 4 images. MRE images were processed with multiple regions of interest in analysis for each kidney.


Two male and 4 female subjects with age range 32 – 66 years were included. Kidney stiffness was heterogeneous across both kidneys and between individuals (Table 1). The overall mean stiffness measure for both kidneys together did not differ significantly between method 1 and method 2 (P = 0.4).


MRE of native kidneys was feasible and tolerated by all subjects. Kidney stiffness was heterogeneous across both kidneys. Stiffness measured by either method yielded similar results. However, method 1 requires acquisition of fewer images and does not require repositioning of the driver position thereby shortening scan time.

Kidney Stiffness
Table 1Left Kid.kPALeft Kid. kPaRt. Kid. kPaRt. Kid. kPABoth Kid. kPa
MethodMean (SD.)RangeMean (SD.)RangeMean (SD.)
1.5.25 (0.95)3.90 - 6.605.19 (1.30)4.32 - 7.525.22 (1.08)
2.5.30 (0.95)4.36 - 6.175.64 (0.61)4.67 - 6.415.66 (0.63)


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