Tibiofibular syndesmosis in acute ankle fractures: additional value of an oblique MR image plane

John Hermans, A (Annechien) Beumer, Hop, AFCM Moonen, AZ (Abida) Ginai-Karamat

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To evaluate the additional value of a 45A degrees oblique MRI scan plane for assessing the anterior and posterior distal tibiofibular syndesmotic ligaments in patients with an acute ankle fracture. Prospectively, data were collected for 44 consecutive patients with an acute ankle fracture who underwent a radiograph (AP, lateral, and mortise view) as well as an MRI in both the standard three orthogonal planes and in an additional 45A degrees oblique plane. The fractures on the radiographs were classified according to Lauge-Hansen (LH). The anterior (ATIFL) and posterior (PTIFL) distal tibiofibular ligaments, as well as the presence of a bony avulsion in both the axial and oblique planes was The interobserver agreement (kappa) and agreement score [AS (%)] regarding injury of the ATIFL and PTIFL and the presence of a fibular or tibial avulsion fracture were good to excellent in both the axial and oblique image planes (kappa 0.61-0.92, AS 84-95%). For both ligaments the oblique image plane indicated significantly less injury than the axial plane (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference in detection of an avulsion fracture in the axial or oblique plane, neither anteriorly (p = Our results show the additional value of an 45A degrees oblique MR image plane for detection of injury of the anterior and posterior distal tibiofibular syndesmoses in acute ankle fractures. Findings of syndesmotic injury in the oblique MRI plane were closer to the diagnosis as assumed by the Lauge-Hansen classification than in the axial plane. With more accurate information, the surgeon can better decide when to stabilize syndesmotic injury in acute ankle fractures.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)193-202
Number of pages10
JournalSkeletal Radiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Research programs

  • EMC NIHES-01-66-01

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