European Radiology

, Volume 11, Issue 6, pp 1030–1038

MRI of the arthritic small joints: comparison of extremity MRI (0.2 T) vs high-field MRI (1.5 T)

  • Anette Savnik
  • Hanne Malmskov
  • Henrik S. Thomsen
  • Thomas Bretlau
  • Lykke Bjerglund Graff
  • Henrik Nielsen
  • Bente Danneskiold-Samsøe
  • Jens Boesen
  • Henning Bliddal
Musculoskeletal

DOI: 10.1007/s003300000709

Cite this article as:
Savnik, A., Malmskov, H., Thomsen, H.S. et al. Eur Radiol (2001) 11: 1030. doi:10.1007/s003300000709

Abstract.

The aim of this study was to compare the diagnostic capabilities of extremity MRI (E-MRI) with high-field MRI in arthritic small joints, and to evaluate the patients' acceptance and perceptions of the two MR systems. One hundred three patients (group 1=28 patients with RA <3 years, group 2=25 patients with reactive and psoriatic arthritis and mixed connective tissue disease, group 3= 25 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) more than 3 years and group 4=25 patients with arthralgia) underwent dedicated E-MRI and high-field MRI of the wrist and finger joints. Coronal short tau inversion recovery and transversal 3D T1-weighted images before and after gadodiamide (Gd) were performed in both cases to outline the volume of the synovial membrane (Vsm) and to evaluate joints with enhancement, effusion, bone edema, and erosions. Investigators blinded to the clinical findings evaluated the images. Patients' compliance and acceptance of E-MRI and high-field MRI were evaluated. The median Vsm obtained on E-MRI did not differ significantly from that obtained on high-field MRI. Vsm=1 ml (E-MRI) and 1.1 ml (high-field MRI) before Gd and Vsm=0.1 ml (E-MRI) and 0 ml (high-field MRI) after Gd (Wilcoxon test, p>0.05). The difference in agreement was 8% for joint enhancement, 2% for joint effusion, 3% for bone edema, and 4% for bone erosions. Of the patients, 64% preferred E-MRI due to more comfortable positioning and less claustrophobia and noise. Extremity MRI of the small arthritic joints is comparable to high-field MRI and more readily accepted than high-field MRI by this patient group.

MRI Inflammatory joint diseases Rheumatoid arthritis Comparative study 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anette Savnik
    • 1
  • Hanne Malmskov
    • 1
  • Henrik S. Thomsen
    • 2
  • Thomas Bretlau
    • 2
  • Lykke Bjerglund Graff
    • 1
  • Henrik Nielsen
    • 4
  • Bente Danneskiold-Samsøe
    • 1
  • Jens Boesen
    • 3
  • Henning Bliddal
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Rheumatology, Parker Institute, Frederiksberg Hospital, Nordre Fasanvej 57, 2000 Frederiksberg, CopenhagenDenmark
  2. 2.Department of Radiology, University Hospital at Herlev, Herlev Ringvej 75, 2730 Herlev, CopenhagenDenmark
  3. 3.Department of Radiology, Frederiksberg Hospital, Nordre Fasanvej 57, 2000 Frederiksberg, CopenhagenDenmark
  4. 4.Department of Rheumatology, University Hospital at Herlev, Herlev Ringvej 75, 2730 Herlev, CopenhagenDenmark

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