MR colonography with fecal tagging: Do individual patient characteristics influence image quality?

Sonja Kinner*, Christiane A. Kuehle, Jost Langhorst, Susanne C. Ladd, Michael Nuefer, Joerg Barkhausen, Thomas C. Lauenstein

*Corresponding author for this work
4 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To evaluate if different patient characteristics influence performance of fecal tagging (a new MR colonography (MRC) technique to label stool to avoid bowel cleansing) and, consecutively, MR image quality. Materials and Methods: A total of 333 patients (mean age = 61 years) underwent MRC with fecal tagging. Four segments of the large bowel (ascending, transverse, descending, and sigmoid colon) were assessed as for the presence of nontagged stool particles, which can impede an assessment of the colonic wall. Ratings were correlated with patients' characteristics including patient age (<55 vs. ≥55 years), body mass index (BMI) (<25 vs. ≥25), gender, and acceptance levels for fecal tagging. Statistical analysis was performed using a Mann-Whitney U-test. Results: A total of 1332 colonic segments were evaluated. Among them, 327 segments (25%) did not contain any visible stool particles. Considerably reduced image quality was found in 61 segments (5%). Best image quality was found in the sigmoid colon (mean value = 1.9), while image quality of the ascending colon turned out to be worst (mean value = 2.6). Fecal tagging effectiveness showed a reverse correlation with patient age. However, all other characteristics did not have a statistically significant influence on fecal tagging outcome. Conclusion: MRC in conjunction with barium-based fecal tagging led to diagnostic image quality in 95% of all colonic segments. Since tagging results were significantly decreased in patients ≥55 years, tagging protocols should to be modified in this group, i.e., by increasing the time interval of tagging administration.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)1007-1012
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 01.05.2007


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