This study investigated the correlation between MRI parameters and clinical assessment in 106 treatment naïve patients presenting with early rheumatoid arthritis (ERA) i.e. symptoms < 24 months. The degree of synovial and tenosynovial proliferation, bone marrow oedema and bone erosions were semi-quantitatively and quantitatively measured on MR imaging. Quantitative MRI parameters showed better correlation with clinical assessment than semi-quantitative methods. Only quantitative MRI methods showed significant change after treatment for one year.