Magnetic resonance imaging based superficial femoral artery velocity measurements in peripheral artery disease

Ankita Sinharoy, Neeti Reddy, John Kent Lin, Vijay Nambi, Eric Y. Yang, Panagiotis Kougias, Addison A. Taylor, Alan B. Lumsden, Christie M. Ballantyne, Joel D. Morrisett, Gerd Brunner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Peripheral artery disease (PAD) causes lower extremity dysfunction and is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular mortality and morbidity. In this study, we analyzed how non-invasive 2-dimensional-phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging (2D-PC-MRI) measured velocity markers of the distal superficial femoral artery (SFA) are associated with clinical and functional characteristics of PAD. A total of 70 (27 diabetic and 43 non-diabetic) PAD patients were included in this secondary analysis of data collected from the Effect of Lipid Modification on Peripheral Artery Disease after Endovascular Intervention Trial (ELIMIT). Electrocardiographically (ECG)-gated 2D-PC-MRI was performed at a proximal and a distal imaging location of the distal SFA. Baseline characteristics did not differ between diabetic and non-diabetic PAD patients. Claudication onset time (COT) was shorter in diabetic PAD patients compared to non-diabetics (0.56 (inter quartile range (IQR): 0.3, 2.04) minutes vs. 1.30 (IQR: 1.13, 2.15) minutes, p = 0.025). In a pooled analysis of all 70 PAD patients, maximum velocity was significantly higher in the proximal compared with the distal SFA segment (43.97 (interquartile range (IQR): 20.4, 65.2) cm/s; vs. 34.9 (IQR: 16.87, 51.71) cm/s; p < 0.001). The maximum velocities in both the proximal and distal SFA segments were significantly higher in diabetic PAD patients compared with non-diabetics (proximal: 53.6 (IQR: 38.73, 89.43) cm/s vs. 41.49 (IQR: 60.75, 15.9) cm/s, p = 0.033; distal: 40.8 (IQR: 23.7, 71.90) cm/s vs. 27.4 (IQR: 41.67, 12.54) cm/s, p = 0.012). Intra-observer variability, as assessed by intraclass correlation (ICC) analysis, was excellent for SFA mean and maximum velocities (0.996 (confidence interval [CI]: 0.996, 0.997); 0.999 (CI: 0.999, 0.999)). In conclusion, 2D-PC-MRI SFA velocity measures are reproducible and may be of interest in assessing diabetic and non-diabetic PAD patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-134
Number of pages7
JournalMagnetic Resonance Imaging
StatePublished - Nov 2022


  • Arterial blood flow velocity
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Peripheral artery disease
  • Superficial femoral artery
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Lower Extremity/pathology
  • Humans
  • Thigh/pathology
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease/diagnostic imaging
  • Femoral Artery/diagnostic imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Biomedical Engineering


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