Comparison of Quantitative and Semiquantitative Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced MRI With Respect to Their Correlation to Delayed Gadolinium-Enhanced MRI of the Cartilage in Patients With Early Rheumatoid Arthritis

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Abstract

Objective

The objective of this study was to investigate the correlation between semiquantitative and quantitative dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE) parameters with delayed gadolinium-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the cartilage (dGEMRIC).

Methods

Fifteen patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA) from the ArthroMark cohort were investigated at a 3-T MRI scanner. The metacarpophalangeal (MCP) joint of the index finger was examined with DCE-MRI and dGEMRIC. Semiquantitative and quantitative DCE perfusion parameters were calculated. The RA MRI score of the second MCP joint and the joint space width were measured.

Results

Significant correlations were noted between both semiquantitative and quantitative DCE parameters and the RA MRI score of the second MCP joint. There was a significant negative correlation between DCE parameters and dGEMRIC. No association between joint space width and DCE parameters was observed.

Conclusions

Semiquantitative and quantitative analyses of perfusion are applicable to show that cartilage damage correlates with the inflammation activity despite the absence of joint space narrowing.

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