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Author Topic: how accurate are MRI scans?  (Read 8249 times)

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Offline scampie

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how accurate are MRI scans?
« on: February 15, 2005, 07:05:41 PM »
My thirteen year old daughter injured her knee last year and A&E did nothing .She limped all summer was unable to do sports, the pain and swelling on the interior aspect was bad.In october she got hit with a hocky ball on her knee and it went black{whilst watching}, we went to A&E again and this time she was referred. We then saw a top physio not a doc who said she required hydrotherapy she could hardly starighten her knee. She had that but pain is still there on inside under kneecap, worse on stairs etc.She then had an MRI two weeks ago, and we went for the results yesturday. Its the first time we saw a doctor and he said the results did not show anyhthing up. We are amazed. He examined her knee and when her knee cap is moved towards midddle of body no pain, when it gets moved to the other side outside it kills her she ends up intears. i no shes not putting it on, but he would only say it should have showed up.What do we do now? she cant do any sports or ride a bike.Can scans miss injuries?   

Offline smiley196

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Re: how accurate are MRI scans?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2005, 07:17:42 PM »
Yes, sometimes MRI's can be misread by surgions and can be seen as perfect. My next door neighbour completely tore her ACL in half and her MRI came back completely wasnt until she had the scope that they realized the extent of the damage. I suggest maybe taking the pictures to an expirenced OS to read them, just to make sure. Best of luck,
*16 years old*
Left Knee:
SEVERAL dislocations
Grade 3 Chondromalacia
Medial & Lateral Meniscus tears
Plica Syndrome
Sept 14th 2005-(LK)ACL recon, TTT, menisectomy,plica removal

May 26th/06-Torn ACL(RK)

June 14th/06-(LK)ACL graft recon, screw removal, menisectomy

Offline Ferris

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Re: how accurate are MRI scans?
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2005, 08:40:16 AM »
I have had two MRIs now - one before a arthroscopy two years ago and the the other in December 2004 and both were inconclusive as to what I had done.  My arthroscopy showed that I had a partial tear of the acl but nothing was done to it at the time and my second surgery showed that the acl was no longer functional which I was pretty certain of already and I had a reconstruction at that point.  However, the MRI beforehand did not indicate the further damage to the acl and so the surgeon could only make the final decision on doing the reconstruction once he had started the arthroscopy and seen the extent of the damage for himself. 

Offline Linds

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Re: how accurate are MRI scans?
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2005, 09:19:30 AM »
MRI's are notorious for not showing exactly what's going on... especially with PF problems... check out Patello Femoral Syndrome ... see if it sounds like what your daughters problem is. I have had 5 MRI's they all showed inflammation and that sort of thing, but they didnt' show my problem.  Sounds like your daughter could use a good set of Skyline view xrays to take a look at how her patella is positioned.  You could also check out the Patello Femoral area of this board.

Hope you get some help for her soon, how frustrating

1997 Scope RK
2002 LR RK
2002 Scope and hematoma evac RK
2004 LR LK
May 06 Fall from Horse, partial ACL tear and meniscus injury, Tibial plateau injury
2007 Scope, Plica Excision and Debride LK
2009/2010- Possibly Ankylosing Spondylitis?

Offline spartanpele

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Re: how accurate are MRI scans?
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2005, 04:15:36 PM »
MRIs can be misread and be inconclusive.  They are usually meant to confirm a prognosis from the doctor.  I had an MRI show that I had a full tear of the ACL, only to have 4 different doctors do physical tests and determine a partial tear instead.  I would advise you have your OS, physical therapist, trainer, etc, go through the physical tests and see how those test matchup with your MRI results.  Make sure whomever is doing the physical tests is very experienced in knee injuries...not just a family doctor.

Best of luck... 

Offline hplax67

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Re: how accurate are MRI scans?
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2005, 12:25:01 AM »
can mri's show a hair line fracture when there isn't one? I ask that because acording to the mri I have a hair line fracture to the patella but my knee feels fine. I was going to the ortho just to be safe nut because it hurt.

Offline MHB

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Re: how accurate are MRI scans?
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2005, 12:36:44 AM »
Hi, here's a link to an expert opinion about knees and MRIs:

4/4/04 - Horizontal patella fracture
4/5 - ORIF 2 screws, figure8 wire, immobilizer, walker
4/16 -  cane
5/10 - no immobilizer
PT -- 5/17 to 6/8
OS Release - 7/12/04