Bone scintigraphy screening for osteonecrosis of the shoulder in patients with non-traumatic osteonecrosis of the femoral head
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Objective. In patients with non-traumatic osteonecrosis of the femoral head (ONFH), the shoulder is one of the major affected sites secondary to the proximal and distal femur in cases of multiple osteonecrosis. The present study attempted to investigate whether technetium bone scintigraphy is useful for screening of non-traumatic osteonecrosis of the shoulder (ONS).
Design and patients. A total of 170 shoulder joints in 85 patients with ONFH were evaluated by bone scintigraphy and the findings compared with those of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The MR diagnosis was used as the gold standard.
Results. Based on the diagnosis by MRI, ONS was detected in 43 shoulders of 27 patients (25%). All necrotic lesions were located in the humeral head. Sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, positive predictive value and negative predictive value of bone scintigraphy for ONS detection were 65%, 81%, 77%, 54% and 87%, respectively. When the necrotic angle of the lesions on the mid-coronal MRI was more than 40°, the sensitivity of bone scintigraphy for ONS detection increased to 88% (21/24 shoulders).
Conclusion. Bone scintigraphy may be useful for demonstrating medium or large ONS lesions on screening of patients with ONFH.
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