Articular cartilage grading of the knee: Diagnostic performance of fat-suppressed 3D volume isotropic turbo spin-echo acquisition (VISTA) compared with 3D T1 high-resolution isovolumetric examination (THRIVE)

Young Han Lee, Seok Hahn, Daekeon Lim, Jin Suck Suh

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background Conventionally, two-dimensional (2D) fast spin-echo (FSE) sequences have been widely used for clinical cartilage imaging as well as gradient (GRE) sequences. Recently, three-dimensional (3D) volumetric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been introduced with one 3D volumetric scan, and this is replacing slice-by-slice 2D MR scans. Purpose To evaluate the image quality and diagnostic performance of two 3D sequences for abnormalities of knee cartilage: fat-suppressed (FS) FSE-based 3D volume isotropic turbo spin-echo acquisition (VISTA) and GRE-based 3D T1 high-resolution isovolumetric examination (THRIVE). Material and Methods The institutional review board approved the protocol of this retrospective review. This study enrolled 40 patients (41 knees) with arthroscopically confirmed abnormalities of cartilage. All patients underwent isovoxel 3D-VISTA and 3D-THRIVE MR sequences on 3T MRI. We assessed the cartilage grade on the two 3D sequences using arthroscopy as a gold standard. Inter-observer agreement for each technique was evaluated with the intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Differences in the area under the curve (AUC) were compared between the 3D-THRIVE and 3D-VISTA. Results Although inter-observer agreement for both sequences was excellent, the inter-observer agreement for 3D-VISTA was higher than for 3D-THRIVE for cartilage grading in all regions of the knee. There was no significant difference in the diagnostic performance (P > 0.05) between the two sequences for detecting cartilage grade. Conclusion FSE-based 3D-VISTA images had good diagnostic performance that was comparable to GRE-based 3D-THRIVE images in the evaluation of knee cartilage, and can be used in routine knee MR protocols for the evaluation of cartilage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-196
Number of pages7
JournalActa Radiologica
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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