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Clin Exp Rheumatol. 1995 Mar-Apr;13(2):155-9.

Joint scintigraphy for quantification of synovitis with 99mTc-labelled human immunoglobulin G compared to histological examination.

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Department of Rheumatology, University Hospital Leiden, The Netherlands.



This study addressed the following questions: How does 99mTc-IgG scintigraphy compare to physical examination in the detection of synovitis as determined histologically, and is 99mTc-IgG scintigraphy a sensitive detector of histologically documented synovitis activity in the absence of clinically detectable knee joint swelling?


The results of measuring synovitis activity by physical examination and by scintigraphy with technetium-99m labelled polyclonal human immunoglobulin G (99mTc-IgG) were compared with the results of histological examination of synovial biopsies taken from the knee joints of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (n = 21), osteoarthritis (n = 9) and various other rheumatic diseases (n = 10).


The sensitivity of 99mTc-IgG scintigraphy in detecting synovitis activity, as determined histologically (85%), was higher than the sensitivity of joint swelling (65%). In the absence of clinically detectable knee joint swelling the sensitivity of 99mTc-IgG scintigraphy was 83%.


This study shows that 99mTc-IgG scintigraphy is a more sensitive method than physical examination in detecting histologically documented synovitis activity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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