To evaluate positron emission tomography / magnetic resonance imaging (PET/MRI) knee imaging to detect and characterize osseous metabolic abnormalities and correlate PET radiotracer uptake with osseous abnormalities and cartilage degeneration observed on MRI.Both knees of 22 subjects with knee pain or injury were scanned at one timepoint, without gadolinium, on a hybrid 3.0T PET-MRI system following injection of (18) F-fluoride or (18) F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG). A musculoskeletal radiologist identified volumes of interest (VOIs) around bone abnormalities on MR images and scored bone marrow lesions (BMLs) and osteophytes using a MOAKS scoring system. Cartilage appearance adjacent to bone abnormalities was graded with MRI-modified Outerbridge classifications. On PET standardized uptake values (SUV) maps, VOIs with SUV greater than 5 times the SUV in normal-appearing bone were identified as high-uptake VOI (VOIHigh ). Differences in (18) F-fluoride uptake between bone abnormalities, BML, and osteophyte grades and adjacent cartilage grades on MRI were identified using Mann-Whitney U-tests.SUVmax in all subchondral bone lesions (BML, osteophytes, sclerosis) was significantly higher than that of normal-appearing bone on MRI (P < 0.001 for all). Of the 172 high-uptake regions on (18) F-fluoride PET, 63 (37%) corresponded to normal-appearing subchondral bone on MRI. Furthermore, many small grade 1 osteophytes (40 of 82 [49%]), often described as the earliest signs of osteoarthritis (OA), did not show high uptake. Lastly, PET SUVmax in subchondral bone adjacent to grade 0 cartilage was significantly lower compared to that of grades 1-2 (P < 0.05) and grades 3-4 cartilage (P < 0.001).PET/MRI can simultaneously assess multiple early metabolic and morphologic markers of knee OA across multiple tissues in the joint. Our findings suggest that PET/MR may detect metabolic abnormalities in subchondral bone, which appear normal on MRI.2 J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2016.
View details for DOI 10.1002/jmri.25529
View details for PubMedID 27796082