Detection of early changes after growth plate injury using MRI

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Abstract

Background:

To elucidate the association between growth plate injury size and the beginning of physeal growth disturbance by MRI.

Methods:

Thirty-two 5-week-old male Japanese white rabbits were used. Injuries were made to the right tibial proximal growth plate central region with a 3.0-mm and a 1.2-mm drill. The left tibia was used as a control. MRI (7.04 Tesla [T], gradient echo: repetition time [TR], 71.68 ms; echo time [TE], 3.60 ms; proton-density weighted imaging: TR, 2000 ms; TE, 12 ms) of the growth plates was performed at 1, 4, 8, 10, and 12 weeks postinjury. Tibia length, histology, radiography, and microcomputed tomography (μCT) were studied.

Results:

MRI showed that at 10 and 12 weeks postinjury in the 3.0-mm group, the medial and lateral growth plates in the noninjured regions were significantly reduced compared with the controls (P < 0.05). At 12 weeks postinjury in the 1.2-mm group, medial and lateral growth plates in the noninjured regions were significantly reduced (P < 0.05). Tibia length and histological growth plate height of injured side in both groups were significantly shorter than controls at 12 weeks postinjury (P < 0.05). Comparison with the controls showed no significant difference at any of the time periods in either the 3.0- or 1.2-mm group according to the radiographic studies (P > 0.05). Bony bridges developed in all the subjects of the 3.0-mm group and in five of eight subjects of the 1.2-mm group, as shown by μCT images.

Conclusion:

This study suggested that growth plate injury size was associated with the timing of the beginning of physeal growth disturbance. J. MAGN. RESON. IMAGING 2015;42:1698–1704.

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