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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jerome Paul Jones, Ph.D.(Ochsner Clinic Foundation)
Description: This book describes the physics of MRI by first describing a clinical MRI facility and the MRI machines. From there, the book explains the physics of how MRI machines work in both overview and detail. Current applications and how they are addressed are discussed. This book follows up the first edition of 2003, but stands fine on its own.
Purpose: The purpose is to present the basics of MR practice and theory as the practitioner first encounters them. This book is necessary because of the rapid development of MRI. I have not seen such a wide range of topics so well discussed before. The book meets the author's objectives for medical physicists and physics/engineering students. Other MR professionals and students will use the book less, but will find the material helpful.
Audience: According to the authors (who are very credible authorities), the book is directed at MR practitioners, including clinicians, technologists, and scientists. It is beautifully targeted at physicists who want to practice MR and teach MR physics. It may overpower the others to some degree, but they will find it helpful in understanding the images they see and the machines they use.
Features: This book covers the physics of clinical MRI/MRS as it is currently practiced. It is very thorough. Mathematics and advanced topics are discussed in blue boxes and in appendixes, which do not have to be read to appreciate each chapter. The figures are helpful and creative, and the discussion of parallel imaging is best explanation I have seen. The index is extensive and relevant. The book does not seem to favor any particular MR manufacturer, and the discussions seem to be correct. Many MRI terms do not have universal abbreviations, and the authors carefully define the ones they use, which I appreciate, but I did not like them using GE for gradient echo (in the U.S., GRE is used for this) due to its commercial interpretation. Shortcomings include some typos, the placement of figures and their text discussions several pages apart, and the lack of mention of toxicity of Gd contrast agents. The top part of figure 7-10 did not reproduce well, and this is a key illustration. The color images are collected between chapters 15 and 16, and while interesting, are many pages from their related descriptive text.
Assessment: At last, a book that sensibly explains the new MR techniques of the past few years. Physicists/engineers will gain the most from the book, and can use it in both their research and teaching. I am not aware of any text or CME course that covers this much current MR material in this much detail. MR is changing so fast that textbooks rapidly fall out of date — both clinical and physics texts. Only new developments since 2005 are not included in this book, and for now at least, it is still current. Although I am not familiar with this book or the authors, I can say that I found this book well worthwhile, and believe that many others will as well.