Low-field magnetic resonance imaging of bone marrow in the lumbar spine, pelvis, and femur in the adult dog

Armbrust LJ, Hoskinson JJ, Biller DS, et al.

Vet Radiol Ultrasound 2004;45:393-401.

The purpose of this study was to describe the appearance of normal bone marrow in seven adult dogs using low-field (0.3T) magnetic resonance (MR) imaging. The areas imaged included the lumbar spine, pelvis, and femur. T1-weighted, fast spin-echo T2-weighted, and short tau (T1) inversion recovery (STIR) sequences were obtained at all locations. Histopathology was performed on sections from the sixth lumbar vertebral body, the wing of the ilium, and the femur (head and neck, mid-diaphysis, and condyle) for evaluation of cellularity and fat content. The lumbar spine and pelvic marrow MR images were similar in all dogs. The lumbar vertebral bone marrow was uniform, intermediate signal intensity, and isointense to muscle on all sequences. There was variation between dogs in the bone marrow distribution with MR imaging of the femur. In the proximal and mid-diaphysis of the femur there was patchy high-signal intensity on T1- and T2-weighted images, and hypointense foci on the STIR images. The distal femoral metaphysis had a variable pattern ranging from intermediate-to-high signal on T1- and T2-weighted images and intermediate-to-low signal on STIR images. The femoral condyles were uniformly high signal on T1- and T2-weighted images and hypointense on STIR images. Histopathologically there was a normal variation in the bone marrow cellularity. The marrow was normocellular (25-75% cellularity) for all sites examined except the femoral condyles, which were hypocellular (<25% cellularity).