The tibial tuberosity-trochlear groove distance; a comparative study between CT and MRI scanning

Knee. 2006 Jan;13(1):26-31. doi: 10.1016/j.knee.2005.06.003. Epub 2005 Jul 14.


CT scan is the gold standard for the measurement of the tibial tuberosity-trochlear groove distance (TTTG). The aim of this study was to evaluate the reliability of the TTTG on MRI compared to CT scan. Twelve knees in 11 patients underwent CT and MRI examination for patellofemoral instability or anterior knee pain. Both the bony and the cartilaginous landmarks of the trochlear groove were used for the measurement of the TTTG. The measurements were performed by two experienced musculoskeletal radiologists. The interrater, intermethod and interperiod reliability was calculated using a restricted maximum likelihood estimation and a Bland-Altman analysis. The mean TTTG referenced on bony landmarks was 14.4+/-5.4 mm on CT scans, and 13.9+/-4.5 mm on MR images. The mean TTTG referenced on cartilaginous landmarks was 15.3+/-4.1 mm on CT scans, and 13.5+/-4.6 mm on MR images. An excellent interrater (82%), intermethods (86%), and interperiod (91%) quantitative reliability was found. TTTG can be determined reliably on MRI using either cartilage or bony landmarks. Additional CT scans are not necessary.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Knee Joint / anatomy & histology
  • Knee Joint / diagnostic imaging
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / standards*
  • Male
  • Tibia / anatomy & histology*
  • Tibia / diagnostic imaging
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed