MR Imaging of Joint Infection and Inflammation with Emphasis on Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced-MR Imaging
Contrast-enhanced MR imaging (CE-MR imaging) is recommended for diagnosis and monitoring of infectious and most inflammatory joint diseases. CE-MR imaging clearly differentiates soft and bony tissue from fluid collections and infectious debris. To improve imaging information, a dynamic CE-MR imaging sequence (DCE-MR imaging) sequence can be applied using fast T1-weighted sequential image acquisition during contrast injection. Use of DCE-MR imaging allows robust extraction of quantitative information regarding blood flow and capillary permeability, especially when dedicated analysis methods and software are used to analyze contrast kinetics. This article describes principles of DCE-MR imaging for the assessment of infectious and inflammatory joint diseases.