1.5-T surface-coil MRI of the knee

D. L. Burk, E. Kanal, James A Brunberg, G. F. Johnstone, H. E. Swensen, G. L. Wolf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Five normal knees and 20 knees with suspected abnormalities involving the menisci or articular surfaces were examined with high-resolution surface-coil MRI. Surgical correlation was available in 15 cases. Signal-to-noise ratios were optimized using a field strength of 1.5 T and a round 7.6-cm surface coil. Spatial resolution was maximized by using fields of view reduced to as small as 8 cm. Separate examinations of the medial and lateral joint compartments were performed with the surface coil positioned vertically adjacent to the meniscus of interest. Then meniscal tears were identified using sagittal and coronal images. T1-weighted images were adequate to detect most meniscal tears, and T2-weighted images were useful for providing an 'arthrogram effect' in the presence of a joint effusion. Extrameniscal lesions that were examined included osteonecrosis of the femoral condyle, subchondral cysts, rheumatoid arthritis, degenerative arthritis, and anterior cruciate ligament tears. MRI was useful in determining the integrity of articular cartilage overlying defects in the subchondral bone and in detecting gross cartilage lesions in arthritis, but was less sensitive than arthroscopy in evaluating moderate changes in the hyaline cartilage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)293-300
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology


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