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Skeletal Radiol. 1990;19(1):5-14.

Magnetic resonance imaging of the shoulder: rationale and current applications.

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Department of Radiology, University of California, San Francisco 94143.


Because it can demonstrate a wide range of tissue contrast with excellent resolution, magnetic resonance (MR) imaging has revolutionized imaging in many areas of the musculoskeletal system and has generated excitement among those interested in the painful shoulder. Shoulder impingement syndrome and glenohumeral instability constitute the two major categories of shoulder derangements. Correct diagnosis requires the use of appropriate pulse sequences and imaging planes, proper patient positioning, and a satisfactory surface coil. In addition the imager must have a thorough understanding of shoulder anatomy and pathology. We present a summary of the current status of MR imaging of the shoulder including technical, anatomic, and pathologic considerations and a review of the pertinent literature.

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