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CT Concepts

The Elbow

Reichle J.K. and Snaps F.

Clin Tech Small Anim Pract, 1999. 14(3): p.177-86.

Computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are noninvasive methods of imaging the canine cubital joint. CT images are typically acquired using contiguous 1-mm slices, a bone reconstruction algorithm, and a field of view large enough to scan both elbows simultaneously. CT provides a detailed assessment of the medial coronoid process (MCP), radial incisure, anconeal process, and trochlear notch of the ulna; the humeral condyle; joint congruity; and osteoarthrosis. With MRI, use of a surface coil and 3D Fourier transformation gradient echo fast imaging sequences allow contiguous thin slices to be obtained. Both imaging techniques appear to be highly effective in the evaluation of elbow dysplasia, particularly for the detection of MCP fragmentation, although MRI is superior to CT for identifying nonmineralized cartilaginous fragments.