Christoph Stehling1,2, Benedikt J. Schwaiger1, Christina Mueller-Hoecker1, Roland Krug1, Daniel Kuo1, Nancy E. Lane3, Michael C. Nevitt4, John Lynch4, Charles E. McCulloch4, Thomas M. Link1
1Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, United States; 2Department of Clinical Radiology, University of Muenster, Muenster, Germany; 3Center for Healthy Aging, University of California Davis, Sacramento, United States; 4Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, United States
The aim was to study association of knee cartilage abnormalities and T2-relaxation-time-measurements at baseline and 24 months, using 3T MRI and physical activity levels obtained in 182 asymptomatic subjects aged 45-55 years from the Osteoarthritis Initiative. Cartilage T2 increased significantly over time. Subjects with cartilage abnormalities and higher physical activity had higher T2 at baseline and follow-up and higher increase in T2 over time compared to more sedentary subjects. Interestingly cartilage lesions and higher physical activity induced accelerated cartilage-matrix changes. These results suggest that T2 mapping may be an useful quantitative parameters to assess longitudinal changes in early OA.