Acetabular Labrum: MRI in Asymptomatic Volunteers

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The purpose of this study was to describe the MR appearance of the acetabular labrum in asymptomatic hips on high resolution MRI.


Fifty-two hips in 46 asymptomatic volunteers with an age range of 15-85 years were evaluated with coronal and axial T1-weighted and T2-weighted sequences. The shape, margin, size, and signal intensity of the acetabular labrum were analyzed.


The labrum was absent in its anterosuperior aspect in five hips (10%). Intralabral regions of intermediate or high signal intensity were detected in 30 hips (58%) imaged with T1-weighted and proton density-weighted sequences. Intralabral linear hyperintense foci reaching the articular surface and consistent with a labral tear were detected in four labra on T2-weighted images. Intralabral microcysts were seen in three labra.


The MR appearance of the hip labrum is varied in asymptomatic volunteers. Intralabral increased signal intensity and absent anterosuperior labra are especially frequent and may represent asymptomatic lesions or normal variations.

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