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Semin Musculoskelet Radiol. 2002 Sep;6(3):253-61.

Imaging of trabecular bone structure.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Technische Universit√§t M√ľnchen, Ismaninger Strasse 22, D-81675 Munich, Germany.


In addition to bone mass, trabecular bone architecture is an important entity in assessing bone fragility, which is crucial in the diagnosis of osteoporosis. A number of imaging techniques have been used to analyze bone structure noninvasively. Projection radiography has been used with good results in the peripheral skeleton; however, this is only a two-dimensional technique, which reflects trabecular bone structure to a certain extent. High-resolution tomographic techniques, such as high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography (CT), have a limited spatial resolution but the potential to image three-dimensional architecture of trabecular bone. With the advances in magnetic resonance hardware and software and new CT techniques (i.e., multislice spiral CT and clinical micro-CT), noninvasive imaging of trabecular bone is becoming more feasible.

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