Purpose: To evaluate the occurrence and extent of Gd-DTPA-enhanced synovial structures in asymptomatic knee joints of middle-aged healthy individuals.
Material and methods: MR imaging of the knee joint was performed in 10 healthy subjects aged 40-61 years. The study included a sagittal T1-weighted SE sequence before and after i.v. injection of 0.1 mmol Gd-DTPA/kg b.w.
Results: Contrast-enhanced synovial structures were found in all knees. The extent of the synovial structures was usually not uniform within the examined joint. In the intercondylar fossa, the thickness of synovial structures was more often pronounced. In the suprapatellar recess, synovial thickness was constant and minimal.
Conclusion: The presence and the varying extent and thickness of synovial structures in asymptomatic knees in middle-aged individuals must be considered in the evaluation of early and mild synovitis of the knee joint with Gd-enhanced MR imaging in this age group.