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Monitoring changes of the muscles around the knee joint in amateur marathon athletes using synthetic magnetic resonance imaging: A preliminary study
WU Wenhao  ZHU Huimin  ZHU Dantian  HU Feng  GUO Yuankun  LI Shaolin  FANG Yijie 

Cite this article as: WU W H, ZHU H M, ZHU D T, et al. Monitoring changes of the muscles around the knee joint in amateur marathon athletes using synthetic magnetic resonance imaging: A preliminary study[J]. Chin J Magn Reson Imaging, 2023, 14(7): 98-102, 120. DOI:10.12015/issn.1674-8034.2023.07.017.

[Abstract] Objective To investigate the value of synthetic MRI (SyMRI) sequences for quantitative detection of the muscles around the knee joints before and after amateur marathon runners participated in a marathon.Materials and Methods Twenty-four amateur marathon runners (48 knees), 21 males and 3 females, aged 24 to 50 (40±6) years, were prospectively recruited. All subjects were examined with GE SIGNA Pioneer 3.0 T MRI. SyMRI sequences of both knees were performed 1 week before the marathon, 48 hours after the marathon, and 1 month after the marathon. Conventional contrast-weighted images as well as 3 quantitative profiles of T1, T2, and proton density (PD) were obtained after scanning. ITK-SNAP software was applied in the post-processing platform to measure the T1, T2, and PD values of the semimembranosus, biceps femoris, lateral femoris, medial femoris, medial head of the gastrocnemius, and lateral head of gastrocnemius, popliteus, and tibialis anterior muscles in sagittal images of the knee joint. The differences in T1, T2, and PD values of each muscle were analyzed before and 48 hours after the race and 1 month after the race.Results All subjects showed no significant abnormalities in muscle morphology or signal around the knee during the examination (P>0.05). The values of T1, T2 and PD of the muscles around the knee joint measured by two radiologists were good consistent, with ICC values of 0.801, 0.909 and 0.921, respectively. Most muscle subregions had elevated T1, T2, and PD values 48 hours after the marathon compared to pre-race, and decreased after 1 month of post-race rest. There were statistically significant changes in T2 values for semimembranosus, biceps femoris, lateral femoris, medial femoris, medial head of the gastrocnemius, and lateral head of gastrocnemius (P<0.05), and statistically significant changes in PD values for medial femoris (P<0.05).Conclusions The quantitative parameter values of SyMRI sequences can be useful for detecting dynamic changes in the knee muscles before and after marathon exercise.
[Keywords] knee joint;muscle;marathon;synthetic magnetic resonance imaging;magnetic resonance imaging

WU Wenhao   ZHU Huimin   ZHU Dantian   HU Feng   GUO Yuankun   LI Shaolin   FANG Yijie*  

Department of Radiology, Fifth Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-Sen University, Zhuhai 519000, China

Corresponding author: Fang YJ, E-mail:

Conflicts of interest   None.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS National Natural Science Foundition of China (No. 82101995, 82172053).
Received  2022-09-09
Accepted  2023-06-29
DOI: 10.12015/issn.1674-8034.2023.07.017
Cite this article as: WU W H, ZHU H M, ZHU D T, et al. Monitoring changes of the muscles around the knee joint in amateur marathon athletes using synthetic magnetic resonance imaging: A preliminary study[J]. Chin J Magn Reson Imaging, 2023, 14(7): 98-102, 120. DOI:10.12015/issn.1674-8034.2023.07.017.

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