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01.12.2017 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2017 Open Access

Arthritis Research & Therapy 1/2017

Association of medial meniscal extrusion with medial tibial osteophyte distance detected by T2 mapping MRI in patients with early-stage knee osteoarthritis

Arthritis Research & Therapy > Ausgabe 1/2017
Shinnosuke Hada, Muneaki Ishijima, Haruka Kaneko, Mayuko Kinoshita, Lizu Liu, Ryo Sadatsuki, Ippei Futami, Anwajan Yusup, Tomohiro Takamura, Hitoshi Arita, Jun Shiozawa, Takako Aoki, Yuji Takazawa, Hiroshi Ikeda, Shigeki Aoki, Hisashi Kurosawa, Yasunori Okada, Kazuo Kaneko



Medial meniscal extrusion (MME) is associated with progression of medial knee osteoarthritis (OA), but no or little information is available for relationships between MME and osteophytes, which are found in cartilage and bone parts. Because of the limitation in detectability of the cartilage part of osteophytes by radiography or conventional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the rate of development and size of osteophytes appear to have been underestimated. Because T2 mapping MRI may enable us to evaluate the cartilage part of osteophytes, we aimed to examine the association between MME and OA-related changes, including osteophytes, by using conventional and T2 mapping MRI.


Patients with early-stage knee OA (n = 50) were examined. MRI-detected OA-related changes, in addition to MME, were evaluated according to the Whole-Organ Magnetic Resonance Imaging Score. T2 values of the medial meniscus and osteophytes were measured on T2 mapping images. Osteophytes surgically removed from patients with end-stage knee OA were histologically analyzed and compared with findings derived by radiography and MRI.


Medial side osteophytes were detected by T2 mapping MRI in 98% of patients with early-stage knee OA, although the detection rate was 48% by conventional MRI and 40% by radiography. Among the OA-related changes, medial tibial osteophyte distance was most closely associated with MME, as determined by multiple logistic regression analysis, in the patients with early-stage knee OA (β = 0.711, p < 0.001). T2 values of the medial meniscus were directly correlated with MME in patients with early-stage knee OA, who showed ≥ 3 mm of MME (r = 0.58, p = 0.003). The accuracy of osteophyte evaluation by T2 mapping MRI was confirmed by histological analysis of the osteophytes removed from patients with end-stage knee OA.


Our study demonstrates that medial tibial osteophyte evaluated by T2 mapping MRI is frequently observed in the patients with early-stage knee OA, showing close association with MME, and that MME is positively correlated with the meniscal degeneration.
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