OBJECTIVE: The T2' imaging has been shown to be sensitive to oxygen saturation changes in normal appearing white and grey matter (NAWM, NAGM) in patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). We aimed to explore the presence and extent of T2' changes in patients with a clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) and a possible association of T2' with conventional magnetic resonance imaging and clinical outcomes.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Quantitative T2- and T2*-weighted images were acquired in 32 treatment-naive patients with a CIS within 3 months of presentation and 15 age-matched healthy controls (HC). Quantitative T2' values were determined in six regions of interest (ROIs).
RESULTS: The T2' values in CIS did not differ significantly from those in HC. Among patients, T2' values correlated positively with the T2 lesion volume (T2LV, r = 0.34, P < 0.05). T2' values of the frontal NAWM correlated with the T2LV (r = 0.35, P < 0.05) and T2 lesion count (r = 0.4, P = 0.02).
CONCLUSION: As opposed to RRMS, patients with CIS did not show T2' alterations compared to HC. However, the association between the T2LV and higher T2' values suggests that T2' reflects disease evolution. In CIS metabolic changes might be masked by compensatory mechanisms and become overt when disease progresses as has been shown for RRMS patients.