Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography is more sensitive than grayscale and power Doppler ultrasonography compared to MRI in therapy monitoring of rheumatoid arthritis patients.

Abstract

PURPOSE To evaluate wrist and finger joints in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) by grayscale, power Doppler (PD) and contrast-enhanced musculoskeletal ultrasonography (US) and to compare these findings with MRI, clinical (DAS28) and laboratory (ESR; CRP) data. MATERIALS AND METHODS US was performed at baseline (t0) and after three, six and twelve (t12) months before and after a change of medical treatment. MRI was carried out at t0 and t12 and used as the reference method. Contrast-enhanced US was used to assess one clinically most affected joint region. Different semiquantitative synovitis scores were calculated by grayscale and PD US. RESULTS Contrast-enhanced US results evaluated by enhancement, slope and semi-quantitative assessment significantly correlated to each other, to grayscale US, CRP, as well as to MRI with the highest correlation coefficients for the used contrast-enhanced US modes (r = 0.56, r = 0.55, r = 0.57; each p < 0.05). Sum scores evaluated by grayscale US showed that synovial inflammation in finger joints was detected significantly more frequently in the palmar aspect than on the dorsal side (p = 0.001). Using power Doppler US, the wrists were significantly more inflamed from dorsal than on the palmar side (p = 0.0004). Significant longitudinal correlations between grayscale and power Doppler US scores were detected. CONCLUSION Grayscale, power Doppler and contrast-enhanced US are accurate tools for the detection and follow-up of synovitis in RA wrist and finger joints, with contrast-enhanced US being most sensitive compared to MRI. All imaging methods reflected a good response to TNFα blocking therapy.

DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1281770

Cite this paper

@article{Ohrndorf2011ContrastenhancedUI, title={Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography is more sensitive than grayscale and power Doppler ultrasonography compared to MRI in therapy monitoring of rheumatoid arthritis patients.}, author={Sarah Ohrndorf and A Hensch and Lydia Naumann and K. A. Hermann and Christian Scheurig-Muenkler and Simon Meier and G R Burmester and Marina Backhaus}, journal={Ultraschall in der Medizin}, year={2011}, volume={32 Suppl 2}, pages={E38-44} }