MRI in the Diagnosis and Treatment Response Assessment of Chronic Nonbacterial Osteomyelitis in Children and Adolescents


CURRENT RHEUMATOLOGY REPORTS, vol.24, no.2, pp.27-39, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 24 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11926-022-01053-x
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded, Scopus, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.27-39
  • Keywords: Chronic nonbacterial osteomyelitis, Chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis, Whole-body magnetic resonance imaging, Autoinflammatory diseases, RECURRENT MULTIFOCAL OSTEOMYELITIS, WHOLE-BODY MRI, DISEASE-ACTIVITY, BONE, OSTEITIS, RADIOGRAPHY, INVOLVEMENT, THERAPY


Purpose of Review To explain the central role of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the diagnosis and follow-up of chronic nonbacterial osteomyelitis (CNO) in children and adolescents, centering on practical technical aspects and salient diagnostic features. Recent Findings In the absence of conclusive clinical features and widely accepted laboratory tests, including validated disease biomarkers, MRI (whether targeted or covering the entire body) currently plays an indispensable role in the diagnosis and therapy response assessment of CNO. Whole-body MRI, which is the reference imaging standard for CNO, can be limited to a short tau inversion recovery (STIR) coronal image set covering the entire body and a STIR sagittal set covering the spine, an approximately 30-min examination with no need for intravenous contrast or diffusion-weighted imaging. The hallmark of CNO is periphyseal (metaphyseal and/or epi-/apophyseal) osteitis, identified as bright foci on STIR, with or without inflammation of the adjacent periosteum and surrounding soft tissue. Response to bisphosphonate treatment for CNO has some unique MRI findings that should not be mistaken for residual or relapsing disease. Diagnostic features and treatment response characteristics of MRI in pediatric CNO are discussed, also describing the techniques used, pitfalls encountered, and differential diagnostic possibilities considered during daily practice.