OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the T2 mapping of patellar articular cartilage in patients with osteoarthritis using gradient and spin-echo (GRASE) magnetic resonance (MR) imaging.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: After the imaging of a phantom consisting of two sealed 50-ml test objects with different concentrations (30% and 90% weight/volume) of copper sulphate, the T2 mapping of patellar articular cartilage was performed in 35 patients (21 male and 14 female; mean age +/- SD 42+/-17 years) with moderate degree of patellar osteoarthritis. Turbo-spin-echo (TSE) (TR milliseconds/ minimum-maximum TE milliseconds 3,000/15-120; total acquisition time 5 min 52 s) and GRASE (TR milliseconds/ minimum-maximum TE milliseconds 3,000/15-120; total acquisition time 1 min 51 s) were employed. In each patient patellar cartilage was segmented at nine locations (three superior, three central, and three inferior) by manually defined regions of interest. T2 relaxation times were calculated using a linear fit applied to the logarithm of signal intensity decay.
RESULTS: In the phantom the T2 values measured by GRASE were similar to those measured by MR spectroscopy (test object 1: 48.1 ms vs 51 ms; test object 2: 66.8 ms vs 71 ms; P>0.05, Wilcoxon test). In patients GRASE and TSE-derived T2 values demonstrated good agreement (mean difference +/- SD, 1.81+/-3.63 ms). The within-patient coefficient of variation was 22% for TSE and 23% for GRASE.
CONCLUSION: Fast T2 mapping of the patellar articular cartilage can be performed with GRASE within a third of the time of that of standard sequences.
- Cartilage, Articular
- Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging
- Middle Aged
- Osteoarthritis, Knee
- Phantoms, Imaging
- Reproducibility of Results
- Severity of Illness Index