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Am J Sports Med. 1993 Mar-Apr;21(2):220-3.

"Bone bruises" on magnetic resonance imaging evaluation of anterior cruciate ligament injuries.

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  • 1University of Wisconsin, Department of Surgery, Madison.


Magnetic resonance imaging of the knees of 98 consecutive patients with clinically diagnosed anterior cruciate ligament injuries revealed 47 patients (48%) with focal signal abnormalities consistent with the diagnosis of a "bone bruise." Seventy-one percent of the magnetic resonance images taken within 6 weeks of injury demonstrated a bone bruise, whereas no scans done longer than 6 weeks after injury showed a bruise (P < 0.0001). Also significant was the tendency for lesions to be located in the lateral compartment (P < 0.0001). In the sagittal plane, lesions were most likely to be in the middle third of the lateral femoral condyle and the posterior third of the lateral tibial plateau (P < 0.0001). In 31 patients evaluated arthroscopically, there was no correlation between the presence or location of a bone bruise and articular alterations or meniscal tears observed at surgery.

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