Public Release: 

Bone contusion in knees of adolescents often occur without significant ligament or cartilage injury

American College of Radiology

Bone contusions of the knee in adolescents are often found on MRI examinations to have occurred without significant associated injury to the surrounding menisci, ligaments or cartilage, says a new study by researchers from the University of Texas in Galveston and Texas Orthopedics in Houston.

The study evaluated a total of 413 pediatric knee MRI examinations from a university and a private institution. Of this group, 13% (55 patients) had bone bruises without accompanying meniscal, ligamentous or cartilaginous injuries.

According to Gregory Chalub, MD, one of the authors of the study, the results could impact treatment for these bone injuries in positive ways. "Our finding could very well lead to more conservative therapy in the case of bone contusion. For instance, it could reduce the number of arthroscopies performed. Other possible benefits include a reduction in the level of anxiety experienced by the patients and their families and possibly even a reduction in medical costs."

The next step for the researchers, said Dr. Chalub, is to build on this initial study with a prospective study that includes a greater number of patients and that evaluates more specific numbers of bone bruises and exact locations and sizes of the bruises and that could possibly be correlated with medical follow-up and surgery results.

The study will be presented on May 3 during the American Roentgen Ray Society Annual Meeting in Miami Beach, FL.


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