Comparison of spin echo, gradient echo and fat saturation magnetic resonance imaging sequences for imaging the canine elbow

Snaps FR, Saunders JH, Park RD, et al. 

Vet Radiol Ultrasound 1998;39:518-523.

Two comparison studies were performed. In the first conventional spin-echo (T1- and T2-weighted) sequences and a three-dimensional (3-D Fourier transform [3DFT]) echo gradient fast-imaging sequence were compared for imaging the canine normal elbow joint. In all three sequences, there was an isointense signal of the articular cartilage and a hyposignal of the subchondral bone, as compared with the muscles. The medial coronoid process of the ulna was clearly seen on the dorsal plane images, it appeared with a homogenous low-intensity signal. Its articulation with the radius was clearly outlined. In a second study, the 3DFT echo gradient fast-imaging sequence was compared to a fat saturation sequence on normal shoulder and elbow joints. Elbows were imaged with and without injection of saline, in an attempt to show the opposing cartilaginous articular surfaces. This distinction was possible in the shoulder joint but not in the elbow because of insufficient spatial resolution. On the three MRI sequences compared, gradient echo fast imaging with steady-state precession (GE FISP) sequence was found to be the most suitable for imaging the canine elbow joint.