What is Quantitative DTI?
Quantitative DTI, or Diffusion Tensor Imaging, is an objective and particularly effective method for detecting nerve damage in the brain caused by concussions (mild Traumatic Brain Injury or mTBI).
How does Quantitative DTI Work?
Quantitative DTI measures water molecules as they move along the brains nerve pathways. In the brain, nerve cells are called “axons” and water moves in a specific direction along these pathways. Diffusion Tensor Imaging is a method in which we can watch how water moves along the nerves or what is called FA or fractional anisotropy. If a disruption in the water pathway is detected, we know that there is an injury or damage in that specific area of the brain.
The only way that Quantitative DTI testing can be performed is to have a powerful 3.0T MRI system with specific advanced neurological software and data processing capabilities. Most facilities in the greater New Orleans area offer only 1.5T MRIs. By using this powerful 3.0T MRI machine, with the necessary software and professional expertise, radiologists segment brain DTI scans into 64 different angles to examine the white matter of the brain looking for nerve damage.