Magnetic resonance imaging has developed as a useful imaging modality in the evaluation of the athlete with shoulder pain. The multiplanar capabilities of magnetic resonance imaging make it ideal for detecting the anatomical variations of the osseous outlet that may contribute to the clinical syndrome of impingement. Its superb soft tissue contrast and spatial resolution allow for accurate differentiation between tendinopathy, partial-thickness tear, and full-thickness tear of the rotator cuff and also allow for detection of the subtle lesions of the capsule and labrum that are associated with shoulder instability. However, to accurately interpret the numerous images and pulse sequences obtained in a standard magnetic resonance examination of the shoulder, it is helpful to have a systematic approach to ensure that each of the pertinent anatomical structures are evaluated. This article will provide a systematic approach to the interpretation of a magnetic resonance examination of the shoulder. The normal imaging appearance of each anatomical structure will be described, and the most useful pulse sequences and imaging planes for the evaluation of each structure will be discussed. Finally, the signs of injury will be described and illustrated.
Magnetic resonance imaging is performed more commonly on the knee than on any other joint, and it is an excellent diagnostic tool that can aid in the evaluation of a host of sports-related injuries involving the ligaments, tendons, menisci, osseous structures, and articular surfaces. A thorough evaluation of the images, however, can be a daunting task, as the study often contains dozens of images obtained with multiple pulse sequences and in several imaging planes. A systematic approach will facilitate an accurate and timely evaluation of this complex examination and will ensure that all of the clinically relevant structures are adequately assessed. This article will provide a systematic approach to the interpretation of a magnetic resonance examination of the knee. The normal imaging appearance of each anatomical structure will be described, and the optimal pulse sequence and imaging plane for the evaluation of each structure will be discussed. Finally, the signs of injury will be described and illustrated.
Brinjikji, Luetmer, Comstock, Bresnahan, Chen, Deyo, Halabi, Turner, Avins, James & Wald (2015) Systematic literature review of imaging features of spinal degeneration in asymptomatic populations.
Background and purpose Degenerative changes are commonly found in spine imaging but often occur in pain-free individuals as well as those with back pain. We sought to estimate the prevalence, by age, of common degenerative spine conditions by performing a systematic review studying the prevalence of spine degeneration on imaging in asymptomatic individuals.
Materials and methods We performed a systematic review of articles reporting the prevalence of imaging findings (CT or MR imaging) in asymptomatic individuals from published English literature through April 2014. Two reviewers evaluated each manuscript. We selected age groupings by decade (20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80 years), determining age-specific prevalence estimates. For each imaging finding, we fit a generalized linear mixed-effects model for the age-specific prevalence estimate clustering in the study, adjusting for the midpoint of the reported age interval.
Results Thirty-three articles reporting imaging findings for 3110 asymptomatic individuals met our study inclusion criteria. The prevalence of disk degeneration in asymptomatic individuals increased from 37% of 20-year-old individuals to 96% of 80-year-old individuals. Disk bulge prevalence increased from 30% of those 20 years of age to 84% of those 80 years of age. Disk protrusion prevalence increased from 29% of those 20 years of age to 43% of those 80 years of age. The prevalence of annular fissure increased from 19% of those 20 years of age to 29% of those 80 years of age.
Conclusions Imaging findings of spine degeneration are present in high proportions of asymptomatic individuals, increasing with age. Many imaging-based degenerative features are likely part of normal aging and unassociated with pain. These imaging findings must be interpreted in the context of the patient's clinical condition.