News | February 20, 2007

MRI Identifies ‘Hidden’ Fat that Puts Adolescents at Risk for Disease

February 21, 2007 - single-slice magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a fast, non-invasive way to measure intra-abdominal fat, which when excessive, may put children and teenagers at risk for developing heart disease, diabetes and other illnesses, reports a new study featured in the March issue of Radiology.

Unlike the fat that lies just beneath the abdominal wall, forming skin folds or “love handles,” internal fat located in and around the abdominal organs may actually be more damaging, predisposing children to adult diseases.

“Because metabolic abnormalities appear to be more closely associated with intra-abdominal fat tissue, it is critical to be able to reliably and accurately assess this fat tissue in order to identify children at risk,” said the study’s lead researcher Marilyn J. Siegel, M.D., professor of radiology and pediatrics at Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri.

Results from the 2003-2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that an estimated 18.8 percent of children (age 6 to 11) and 17.4 percent of adolescents (age 12 to 19) in the United States are overweight.

Current methods used to estimate body fat include anthropometry, which involves physical measurements including waist circumference, abdominal height and body mass index, and dual energy absorptiometry (DEXA), a whole-body scan that distinguishes lean mass from fat tissue. However, anthropometry is imprecise and DEXA requires exposure to ionizing radiation.

In Dr. Siegel’s study, 30 adolescents had fat tissue measurements taken using anthropometry, DEXA and single-slice and whole-abdominal, multi-slice MRI. The study’s 20 boys and 10 girls were between the ages of 10 and 18 and included nine overweight but non-diabetic individuals, 10 Type-2 diabetic and overweight patients, and 11 normal weight, non-diabetic adolescents. The single-slice and multi-slice MRI measurements were compared and tested for correlations with anthropometric and DEXA measurements.

“Single- and multi-slice MRI measurements for assessing body fat distribution strongly correlated with clinical and DEXA measures,” Dr. Siegel said. “The single-slice MRI, which takes just a few seconds, characterized body fat as well as the multi-slice exam.”

While all participants had similar fat distribution patterns with a predominance of fat in the tissue of the abdominal wall, the total amount of fat tissue varied. Overall fat volume was highest in the diabetic, overweight adolescents

According to Dr. Siegel, fat tissue estimation through single-slice MRI is simple, fast and could be useful in many clinical and research applications, including patient management, monitoring interventions, and implementing multi-center clinical trials or epidemiologic studies.

“Our ability to accurately measure abdominal fat may substantially advance strategies for achieving healthy weights in children,” she said.

Source: Radiology

Related Content

Smartphone Addiction Creates Imbalance in Brain
News | Mobile Devices | January 11, 2018
Researchers have found an imbalance in the brain chemistry of young people addicted to smartphones and the internet,...
Emergency Radiologists See Inner Toll of Opioid Use Disorders

Rates of Imaging Positivity for IV-SUDs Complications. Image courtesy of Efren J. Flores, M.D.

News | Clinical Study | January 11, 2018
January 11, 2018 – Emergency radiologists are seeing a high prevalence of patients with complications related to opio
Study Finds No Evidence that Gadolinium Causes Neurologic Harm

MR images through, A, C, E, basal ganglia and, B, D, F, posterior fossa at level of dentate nucleus. Images are shown for, A, B, control group patient 4, and the, C, D, first and, E, F, last examinations performed in contrast group patient 13. Regions of interest used in quantification of signal intensity are shown as dashed lines for globus pallidus (green), thalamus (blue), dentate nucleus (yellow), and pons (red).

News | Contrast Media | January 11, 2018
January 11, 2018 — There is no evidence that accumulation in the brain of the element gadolinium speeds cognitive dec
Weight Loss Through Exercise Alone Does Not Protect Knees
News | Orthopedic Imaging | January 11, 2018
January 11, 2018 – Obese people who lose a substantial amount of weight can significantly slow down the degeneration
Neurofeedback Shows Promise in Treating Tinnitus

The standard approach to fMRI neurofeedback. Image courtesy of Matthew Sherwood, Ph.D.

News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) | January 11, 2018
January 11, 2018 — Researchers using...
Male Triathletes May Be Putting Their Heart Health at Risk
News | Cardiac Imaging | January 09, 2018
Competitive male triathletes face a higher risk of a potentially harmful heart condition called myocardial fibrosis,...
State-of-the-Art MRI Technology Bypasses Need for Biopsy
News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) | January 09, 2018
January 9, 2018 – The most common type of tumor found in the kidney is generally quite small (less than 1.5 in).
New Studies Show Brain Impact of Youth Football
News | Neuro Imaging | January 09, 2018
School-age football players with a history of concussion and high impact exposure undergo brain changes after one...
The new GE Healthcare Air Technology MRI coil design is 60 percent lighter than conventional coils, provides more flexibility and conforms to a patient’s anatomy like a blanket. The technology was unveiled at RSNA 2017 in late November.

The new GE Healthcare Air Technology MRI coil design is 60 percent lighter than conventional coils, provides more flexibility and conforms to a patient’s anatomy like a blanket. The technology was unveiled at RSNA 2017 in late November.

Feature | January 08, 2018 | Dave Fornell
Here is the list of the most popular articles and videos on the Imaging Technology News (ITN) magazine website from t
WEBINAR: Neuroimaging from a Clinical Perspective, sponsored by Philips Healthcare. How to better manage your MRI department.
Webinar | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) | January 08, 2018
The CME credit webinar "Neuroimaging from a Clinical Perspective," will explain how imaging departments can become mo
Overlay Init