Quantification of synovitis in the cranio-cervical region: Dynamic contrast enhanced and diffusion weighted magnetic resonance imaging in early rheumatoid arthritis-A feasibility follow up study.
ABSTRACT To test the feasibility of dynamic contrast enhanced (DCEI) and diffusion weighted (DWI) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for quantifying synovitis of the cranio-cervical (C-C) region in patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and neck pain at the beginning and at a six month follow up.
27 patients with duration of RA of less than 24 months and neck pain were studied with standard qualitative MRI evaluation and two quantitative MRI methods (DCEI and DWI) at the level of atlantoaxial joints. Rate of early enhancement (REE), enhancement gradient (Genh) and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) were extracted from DCEI and DWI data. MRI was coupled with clinical assessment and radiographic imaging.
Using standard qualitative MRI evaluation, unequivocal active synovitis (grade 2 or 3 contrast enhancement) was proved in 16 (59%) patients at baseline and 14 (54%) at follow up. DCEI and DWI measurements confirmed active synovitis in 25 (93%) patients at baseline and 24 (92%) at follow up. Average REE, Genh and ADC values decreased during follow up, however the difference was not statistically significant (p>0.05). Both qualitative and quantitative MRI methods confirmed active inflammatory disease in the C-C region following therapy although all clinical criteria showed signs of improvement of the peripheral disease.
The study proved the feasibility of DCEI and DWI MRI for quantifying synovitis of the C-C region in patients with early RA and neck pain. Both techniques can be used as additional method for evaluation of synovitis of the C-C region in RA.
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ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to investigate the feasibility of diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) in detecting synovitis of wrist and hand in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and evaluate its sensitivity, specificity and accuracy as compared to T2-weighted imaging (T2WI) with short tau inversion recovery (STIR) with the reference standard contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (CE-MRI). Twenty-five patients with RA underwent MR examinations including DWI, T2WI with STIR and CE-MRI. MR images were reviewed for the presence and location of synovitis of wrist and hand. The sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of DWI and T2WI with STIR were calculated respectively and then compared. All patients included in this study completed MR examinations and yielded diagnostic image quality of DWI. For individual joint, there was good to excellent inter-observer agreement (k = 0.62–0.83) using DWI images, T2WI with STIR images and CE-MR images, respectively. There was a significance between DWI and T2WI with STIR in analysing proximal interphalangeal joints II- V, respectively (P < 0.05). The k-values for the detection of synovitis indicated excellent overall inter-observer agreements using DWI images (k = 0.86), T2WI with STIR images (k = 0.85) and CE-MR images (k = 0.91), respectively. Overall, DWI demonstrated a sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of 75.6%, 89.3% and 84.6%, respectively, for detection of synovitis, while 43.0%, 95.7% and 77.6% for T2WI with STIR, respectively. DWI showed positive lesions much better and more than T2WI with STIR. Our results indicate that DWI presents a novel non-invasive approach to contrast-free imaging of synovitis. It may play a role as an addition to standard protocols.Magnetic Resonance Imaging 01/2014; · 2.06 Impact Factor