[Imaging modalities in psoriatic arthritis]

Z Rheumatol. 2013 Oct;72(8):771-8. doi: 10.1007/s00393-013-1188-8.
[Article in German]


This review presents an overview of the range of imaging modalities used in the diagnostic evaluation of patients with psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Conventional radiography is used to detect structural changes of the joints and tendon attachments. These changes occur late in the course of PsA hence conventional radiography contributes little to the early detection of PsA; however, the detection of periosteal proliferations on radiographs allows a relatively specific diagnosis of PsA. Skeletal scintigraphy and computed tomography are rarely used in PsA. Arthrosonography (ultrasound of the joints) is gaining increasing importance in the early identification of inflammatory soft tissue signs of PsA in the peripheral joints. Sonography enables early detection of synovitis and tenosynovitis as well as superficial erosions and also inflammatory processes of the tendon attachments. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is indispensable for identifying possible involvement of the axial skeleton. Moreover, it allows good visualization of periostitis and arthritis. High resolution microcomputed tomography is an interesting novel diagnostic tool which allows highly sensitive evaluation of the bone structure and can detect very tiny bone lesions where typical signs of PsA are omega-shaped erosions and small corona-like spikes. Another interesting new diagnostic technique is fluorescence optical imaging (FOI) with the Xiralite system which is highly sensitive for detecting inflammatory processes of the hands.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arthritis, Psoriatic / diagnosis*
  • Arthrography / methods*
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence / methods*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods*
  • Ultrasonography / methods*