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Radiological and Magnetic Resonance Imaging Findings in the Sacroiliac Joints in Patients with early Spondylarthropathy

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Author(s): Reijo Luukkainen | Kimmo O.J. Virtanen | Pekka Luukkainen

Journal: Clinical Medicine : Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Disorders
ISSN 1178-1149

Volume: 1;
Start page: 59;
Date: 2008;
Original page

Keywords: early | spondylarthropathy | LBP | radiography | MRI

ABSTRACT
Objective: To compare the radiological (X-ray) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings in the sacroiliac (SI) joints in patients with early spondylarthropathy (SpA).Methods: Forty consecutive HLA B27 antigen positive patients with early SpA and inflammatory low back pain (LBP) were studied. Their SI joints were investigated by posterior anterior plain X-ray and MRI.Results: The X-ray and MRI examinations gave similar results in the SI joints in 24 patients, whereas they differed in 16, this difference being significant (p = 0.007). In those 16 patients, in whom the findings differed, the X-ray findings were normal but MRI showed sacroiliitis which was bilateral in 13 and unilateral in 3 patients. The kappa coefficient between these investigations was 0.346, showing poor agreement.Conclusion: These results indicate that MRI may considerably improve the diagnosis of sacroiliitis in HLA B27 antigen positive patients with early SpA and inflammatory LBP.
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