Favian Su1, Joan Hilton2, Lorenzo Nardo1, Samuel Wu1, Fei Liang1, Thomas M. Link1, C. Benjamin Ma3, Xiaojuan Li1, 3
1Musculoskeletal Quantitative Imaging Research, Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco, CA, United States; 2Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco, CA, United States; 3Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco, CA, United States
Previous studies suggested that subjects with ACL injuries have a high risk of developing post-traumatic osteoarthritis even after ACL reconstruction. Cartilage matrix and morphology changes were evaluated within the medial and lateral regions of the femur and tibia of ACL-injured knees using 3 T MRI T1ρ and T2 quantification two years following reconstruction. Elevated T1ρ values and thicker medial compartments in ACL-injured patients was observed over the two years. T1ρ values in posterolateral tibial cartilage were significantly higher in ACL-reconstructed knees and were not fully recovered at the 2-year follow-up. These results suggest quantitative MRI can be a powerful tool for stratifying injury, monitoring and potentially predicting post-traumatic OA development in ACL-injured joints.