MR Imaging of the Extracranial Facial Nerve with the CISS Sequence


JP Guenette, N Ben-Shlomo, J Jayender, RT Seethamraju, V Kimbrell, N-A Tran, RY Huang, CJ Kim, JI Kass, CE Corrales, and TC Lee. 2019. “MR Imaging of the Extracranial Facial Nerve with the CISS Sequence.” AJNR Am J Neuroradiol, 40, 11, Pp. 1954-9. Copy at


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: MR imaging is not routinely used to image the extracranial facial nerve. The purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which this nerve can be visualized with a CISS sequence and to determine the feasibility of using that sequence for locating the nerve relative to tumor. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty-two facial nerves in 16 healthy subjects and 4 facial nerves in 4 subjects with parotid gland tumors were imaged with an axial CISS sequence protocol that included 0.8-mm isotropic voxels on a 3T MR imaging system with a 64-channel head/neck coil. Four observers independently segmented the 32 healthy subject nerves. Segmentations were compared by calculating average Hausdorff distance values and Dice similarity coefficients. RESULTS: The primary bifurcation of the extracranial facial nerve into the superior temporofacial and inferior cervicofacial trunks was visible on all 128 segmentations. The mean of the average Hausdorff distances was 1.2 mm (range, 0.3-4.6 mm). Dice coefficients ranged from 0.40 to 0.82. The relative position of the facial nerve to the tumor could be inferred in all 4 tumor cases. CONCLUSIONS: The facial nerve can be seen on CISS images from the stylomastoid foramen to the temporofacial and cervicofacial trunks, proximal to the parotid plexus. Use of a CISS protocol is feasible in the clinical setting to determine the location of the facial nerve relative to tumor.
Last updated on 12/30/2019