Top positive review
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Bridget Jones does MRI!
on 24 April 2003
This book is actually funny, the laughing type of funny. It's not just the Bridget Jones' style week in the life of an MR radiographer, but hidden in the text are various one-liners - like the bit about taking off you watch and emptying your pockets when you visit CT! As well as lightening the subject the humour shows that the authors are not merely remote academics (it is a book primarily about MR physics) but real hands-on MR practitioners and excellent communicators.
So how hard is the physics? Well you have to read far into the book to get any. That's because it's written in a "back-to-front" manner. This ingenious trick enables the reader to become familiar with scanners, scanning and images without having to get bogged down with those bothersome protons and flipping and the like. Eventually the basic physics is introduced but by this time you are so well grounded in the practical aspects of MR - the pictures bit - that you are better equipped to handle the protons.
Another clever idea is having a main text, which is exceptionally easy to read, and optional advanced boxes (printed in a different colour). This makes the book accessible as a basic introductory text and also for more advanced students. It is possible however to learn almost all you need to know without reading the advanced blue bits (well at least I did). All the maths is in the advanced boxes -there are no equations in the main text (thankfully). Also, very handy for exams and interviews, each chapter starts with a summary of what you need to know from that chapter before it delves into the whys and wherefores.
So what does it cover? All the basics: scanners and the scanning suite, safety, basic clinical protocols, image contrast, pixels and matrices, image optimisation, artefacts and how to avoid them, image formation, resonance and relaxation, contrast agents, equipment and bioeffects. That's part A, the bit you can read backwards (and you really can). Part B consists of more specialist topics including all those difficult to remember sequences, angio, cardiac, spectroscopy and a useful chapter on QA. Finally chapter 16 includes EPI, functional, perfusion and diffusion, hyperpolarised gases and parallel imaging (SENSE and SMASH).
MRI from Picture to Proton contains probably more than any one MR professional needs to know but it's hard to imagine why you would need any other MR physics book ever. It's very easy to read, beautifully produced (2 colours on every page and a full colour section) with loads of images and very clear diagrams and in paperback (a hardback version is also available) at £34.95 it's not too expensive. I loved it. They should make it into a movie.