Clinical Rheumatology

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 73–83

Magnetic resonance imaging in patients with inflammatory arthritis of the knee

  • D. G. Brown
  • N. L. Edwards
  • J. M. Greer
  • S. Longley
  • T. GillespyIII
  • R. S. Panush
Originals

DOI: 10.1007/BF02030246

Cite this article as:
Brown, D.G., Edwards, N.L., Greer, J.M. et al. Clin Rheumatol (1990) 9: 73. doi:10.1007/BF02030246

Summary

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) permits visualization of anatomic structures not appreciated by conventional radiographic imaging and may quantify inflammatory disease and its progression with greater sensitivity than available techniques. We therefore compared MRIwith clinical evaluation and with radiographic examination of 17 patients with inflammatory arthritis of the knee. We sought to determine anatomic integrity of bone, cartilage, menisci, and ligaments, and to quantify joint effusion and synovial proliferation. Patients studied had rheumatoid arthritis (10patients), juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (4patients), ankylosing spondylitis (1 patient), and monoarticular arthritis (2 patients). In all patients MRI revealed clinically important abnormalities not detected by physical or conventional radiographic exams. These included proliferative synovitis (13 patients), cartilage thinning (2 patients), cartilage erosion (8 patients), bone infarction (1 patient), meniscal injury (1 patient), and synovial invagination into bone (1 patient). Also MRI indicated inflammatory disease to be quantitatively greater than had been appreciated on clinical examination or routine X-ray studies-proliferative synovitis (12 patients), erosion (7 patients), effusion (8 patients), cartilage thinning (11 patients), and ligamentous/meniscal damage (1 patient). These findings led to reassessment of anatomic staging and influenced therapeutic decision for these patients. Thus MRI provides clinically important information about joint integrity and inflammatory disease, with a sensitivity and resolution considerably beyond conventional techniques.

Key words

MRIKneeInflammatory ArthritisArthritis

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. G. Brown
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • N. L. Edwards
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • J. M. Greer
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • S. Longley
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • T. GillespyIII
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • R. S. Panush
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Clinical Immunology, Rheumatology, and Allergy, Department of Medicine, Department of Radiology, College of MedicineUniversity of Florida and Veterans Aministration Medical CenterGainesville
  2. 2.Department of MedicineUniversity of Medicine and Dentistry-New Jersey, New Jersey Medical SchoolNewark
  3. 3.Department of MedicineSaint Barnabas Medical CenterLivingstonUSA