MRI in seronegative spondyloarthritis: Imaging features and differential diagnosis in the spine and sacroiliac joints

Departamento de Radiologia, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.
American Journal of Roentgenology (Impact Factor: 2.73). 01/2013; 200(1):149-57. DOI: 10.2214/AJR.12.8858
Source: PubMed


Radiologists should be familiar with MRI findings suggestive of spondyloarthritis and its differential diagnosis. Because most publications describing these features are found in the rheumatologic literature, the purpose of this review is to present these imaging findings of axial spondyloarthritis to radiologists.

New imaging outcomes have improved the diagnosis and follow-up of spondyloarthritis and the assessment of therapeutic modalities. Diagnostic criteria include MRI of the sacroiliac joint, which facilitates earlier diagnosis.

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    ABSTRACT: The spine and sacroiliac joint are involved in most cases of axial spondyloarthritis. Several pathologic findings from a radiography involving the spine and sacroiliac joint are the diagnostic hallmarks of axial spondyloarthritis. However, these radiographic changes reflect structural damage rather than active inflammation, which may delay diagnosis by several years. Nowadays, the Assessment of SpondyloArthritis international Society (ASAS) has focused on the reassessment of existing classification criteria and the development and validation of diagnostic tools to facilitate early diagnosis and assessment of treatment response. Magnetic resonance (MR) findings are the most remarkable changes with respect to the previously established classification criteria. Familiarity with typical MRI findings of axial spondyloarthritis and differential diseases is important in order to correctly interpret the findings and avoid misdiagnosis.
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