Morbidity of Direct MR Arthrography

Department of Radiology, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.
American Journal of Roentgenology (Impact Factor: 2.73). 04/2011; 196(4):868-74. DOI: 10.2214/AJR.10.5145
Source: PubMed


The purpose of this study was to determine the incidence and severity of arthrographic pain after intraarticular injection of a gadolinium mixture diluted in normal saline for direct MR arthrography.
From March 2009 until January 2010, 155 consecutive patients underwent direct MR arthrography; 20 patients were lost to follow-up. Patients were contacted by telephone between 3 and 7 days after joint injection. Using an 11-point numeric pain rating scale, patients were asked to report if they had experienced joint pain that was different or more intense than their preinjection baseline, the severity of pain, the duration of pain, time to onset of pain, and eventual resolution of pain.
The incidence of postarthrographic pain was 66% (89/135), with an average intensity of pain of 4.8 ± 2.4 (range, 1-10). Postarthrographic pain lasted an average of 44.4 ± 30.5 hours (range, 6-168 hours). The time to onset of pain after joint injection was on average 16.6 ± 13.1 hours (range, 4-72 hours). There was no significant difference regarding the severity or incidence of postarthrographic pain between groups on the basis of patient age (p = 0.20 and 0.26), patient sex (p = 0.20 and 0.86), contrast mixture contents (p = 0.83 and 0.49), or joint injected (p = 0.51 and 0.47). No patients experienced any other serious side effects.
Sixty-six percent of patients who undergo direct MR arthrography will experience a fairly severe delayed onset of pain that completely resolves over the course of several days.

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    • "Intra-articular positioning of the needle, although usually safe, may contribute to patient morbidity. In a review of 135 patients who underwent D-MRA, 66 % experienced transient, but significant delayed onset pain in the joint [19]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose Indirect magnetic resonance arthrography (I-MRA) confers significant logistical advantages over direct MRA and does not require articular injection. In this study, we determined the diagnostic performance of I-MRA in relation to conventional MRI and arthroscopy or surgery in detecting tears of the glenoid labrum, including Bankart lesions and superior labral antero-posterior (SLAP) tears in a standard clinical setting. Patients and methods Ninety-one symptomatic patients underwent conventional MRI and I-MRA of the affected shoulder, followed by either arthroscopy or open surgery. The scans were interpreted independently by two experienced radiology consultants with a special interest in musculoskeletal radiology. Using the surgical findings as the standard of reference, sensitivity, specificity, and diagnostic accuracy of conventional non-contrast MRI and I-MRA in the detection of labral tears were calculated. Results The sensitivity of I-MRA was 95 and 97 %, respectively, for two radiologists as opposed to 79 and 83 % for conventional MRI. For both radiologists, the specificity of I-MRA, as well as MRI, was 91 % for detection of labral tears of all types. Accuracy of diagnosis was 93 and 95 %, respectively, for two radiologists with indirect MRA, compared to 84 and 86 % with non-contrast MRI. Conclusions This retrospective study shows that I-MRA is a highly accurate and sensitive method for the detection of labral tears. The data obtained supports the use of I-MRA as standard practice in patients with shoulder instability due to suspected labral pathology where further investigative imaging is indicated.
    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · Skeletal Radiology
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    • "Several studies have evaluated postarthrographic pain after direct MRA in different joints. Giaconi et al. [6] reported on postarthrographic pain in 20 out of 26 hips (77%) that started the day after injection and resolved over 2-3 days. Other than pain, there were no other reported complications and specifically no cases of septic arthritis. "
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    ABSTRACT: Magnetic resonance arthrography (MRA) is commonly used to detect labral tears of the hip. Complications of MRA are unusual and include minor reactions such as chemical synovitis and urticaria. This paper presents a rapidly progressive chondrolysis of the hip in a young patient after arthrography. The patient had suffered from acute septic arthritis and was treated by emergent arthroscopic surgery followed by appropriate antibiotics. At 18 months of followup, there were no signs of active infection but evidence of joint chondrolysis. Magnetic resonance arthrography (MRA) of the hip is an invasive procedure and should therefore be recommended judiciously. Post-MRA pain is common but often mild and temporary, while post-MRA joint infection is rare; nevertheless, severe joint pain and limitation should raise suspicion for septic hip.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2013
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    Preview · Article · Dec 2011 · American Journal of Roentgenology
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