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Fundamental Musculoskeletal MRI - Essay Example

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With the three bones of the arm contributing to its structure, the elbow is a hinge-type synovial joint of the upper extremity that provides both structure and function. In detail, the wide and flattened distal end of the humerus, specifically the middle trochlea, articulates…
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Download file to see previous pages However, similar to the posterior elbow, only one capsular attachment covers these two fossae. The proximal end of the ulna has two processes, the olecranon and coronoid, with the former being the site of attachment of the triceps tendon. Aside from the head, the radius also has a tuberosity, located beneath the medial aspect of the neck (Bhutani, 2011).
The structure of the elbow is maintained by a weak fibrous tissue that envelopes the whole joint. The synovial membrane lines the inner surface of the capsule, and in between the synovial membrane and capsule are several fat pads. The collateral ligament complexes on the elbow are found to overlie the capsule. The radial or lateral collateral ligamentous complex consisting of the the radial ligament, annular ligament, lateral ulnar collateral ligament, and accessory ligament attaches superiorly to the lateral epicondyle and inferiorly to the radial notch of the ulna and to the annular ligament. On the other hand, the ulnar or medial collateral ligament spans from the medial epicondyle to the coronoid and olecranon processes. At the elbow is another joint, called the radioulnar joint, which is between the radial head and the radial notch of the ulna (Bhutani, 2011).
Figure 1. Diagram of the Elbow. From The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Tennis Elbow [online] Available at: In conducting elbow MRI, patient can be positioned prone or supine, with the arm overhead. Taking the latter is more comfortable for the patient (Vahlensieck, Genant, Reiser, 2000). Imaging is from 10 cm above the elbow joint to the bicipital tuberosity (Bhutani, 2011). The elbow MRI imaging options are axial, sagittal, coronal, oblique and reformatted thin-section gradient-echo images. The axial image is necessary to assess ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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