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J Comput Assist Tomogr. 2008 May-Jun;32(3):452-7. doi: 10.1097/RCT.0b013e31812f4eb0.

Magnetic resonance imaging findings of surgically proven medial meniscus root tear: tear configuration and associated knee abnormalities.

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Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Seoul Paik Hospital, Inje University College of Medicine, No. 85 2-Ka, Jur-Dong, Chung-Gu, Seoul, Korea.



To evaluate magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings of medial meniscal root tear and the correlation of medial meniscal root tear with other associated knee abnormalities.


We retrospectively assessed preoperative magnetic resonance images of 39 patients with arthroscopically confirmed medial meniscal root tear. Magnetic resonance imaging findings were retrospectively reviewed by 2 experienced musculoskeletal radiologists for consensus. We evaluated the configuration of meniscal root tear and the other associated knee abnormalities on MRI for direct correlation with arthroscopic findings.


At arthroscopy, there were 36 radial tears and 3 complex tears involving the medial meniscal posterior horn roots. All 36 radial tears could be correctly diagnosed by MRI, with findings showing ghost sign on sagittal images in 100% (36/36), vertical linear defect on coronal images in 100% (36/36), and radial linear defect on axial image in 94% (34/36). However, all 3 complex tears were misdiagnosed as radial tears on MRI. Medial meniscal root tears displayed a strong association with degenerative joint disease in 97% (38/39). Medial meniscal root tears were also found in association with cartilage defects of the medial femoral condyle and medial meniscal extrusions (> or =3 mm) in 89% (34/38) and 67% (26/39), respectively.


Medial meniscal root tears were usually posterior horn root radial tear. A high association with degenerative joint disease, cartilage defects of the medial femoral condyle, and medial meniscal extrusions (>/=3 mm) were also noted.

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