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VIDEO: Poor Interobserver Agreement in MRI Findings of Osteochondritis Dissecans

In This Article

  • Osteochondritis dissecans of the capitellum is a condition affecting the cartilage and surrounding bone in pediatric and adolescent athletes
  • Lucas Oh, MD, and colleagues recently examined the methodologies for diagnosing the condition, and found that interobserver agreements are poor for MRI findings
  • Dr. Oh recommends further development of MRI evaluation techniques to facilitate early detection and the best course of treatment for patients

At the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) 2018 annual meeting, Lucas Oh, MD, sports medicine orthopedic surgeon, spoke with Healio about his recent study in the Journal of Shoulder and Elbow Surgery. The study examined the methodologies for the evaluation and management of osteochondritis dissecans of the capitellum. This condition affects the cartilage and the bone underneath the cartilage in pediatric and adolescent athletes. The study focused on the condition in the elbow, although it can exist in other joints. Osteochondritis dissecans is commonly diagnosed through MRI. However, Dr. Oh says that he and his colleagues have found that "the interobserver agreement of MRI findings is relatively poor among practicing orthopedic surgeons as well as musculoskeletal-trained radiologists who are reviewing the MRIs."

This lack of interobserver agreement is problematic, since the condition being diagnosed as stable or unstable leads to very different treatment options. The size and location of the lesion can also influence surgical treatment options. Further development of MRI evaluation techniques is required for early detection of this condition in young athletes.

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