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A novel ultrasound scanning approach for evaluating femoral cartilage defects of the knee: comparison with routine magnetic resonance imaging

ABSTRACT

This study aimed to assess a novel ultrasound (US) scanning approach in evaluating knee femoral cartilaginous defects, compared with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI, commonly used for knee imaging) and arthroscopy (gold standard).Sixty-four consecutive patients (65 knees) were prospectively evaluated between April 2010 and July 2011.The overall sensitivity (62.2 and 69.4%), specificity (92.9 and 90.5%), accuracy (75.4 and 78.5%), and adjusted positive (88.7 and 90.4%) and negative predictive (69.5 and 73.3%) were similar for both radiologists (weighted κ = 0.76). Furthermore, agreement between grading by US and MRI was substantial (weighted κ = 0.61).In conclusion, the novel US scanning approach allows similar diagnostic performance compared to routine MRI for knee cartilage defects. US is more accessible, easier to perform, and less expensive than MRI, with potential advantages of easier initial screening and assessment of cartilage defects.