Skeletal Radiology

, Volume 39, Issue 2, pp 185–188 | Cite as

A histopathological evaluation of a concave-shaped low-intensity band on T1-weighted MR images in a subchondral insufficiency fracture of the femoral head

  • Garida Zhao
  • Takuaki YamamotoEmail author
  • Satoshi Ikemura
  • Yasuharu Nakashima
  • Taro Mawatari
  • Goro Motomura
  • Yukihide Iwamoto
Case Report


A 73-year-old female suffered from right hip pain without any history of antecedent trauma. The initial radiograph showed a slight narrowing of the joint space in the right hip. The patient was treated by non-weight bearing for 5 weeks. Radiographs obtained 3 months after the onset of pain showed the progression of both the joint-space narrowing and subchondral collapse at the superior portion. T1-weighted MR (magnetic resonance) images obtained 3 months after the onset revealed an irregular-shaped low-intensity area just beneath the articular cartilage as well as a low-intensity band, which was concave to the articular surface. A total hip replacement was performed. A histopathological examination revealed fracture callus and granulation tissue in the subchondral area. This subchondral fractured area was surrounded by vascular rich granulation tissue and fibrous tissue, which corresponded to the concave-shaped low-intensity band observed on the T1-weighted image.


MRI Subchondral fracture Femoral head Histopathology 



This work was supported in part by a Grant-in-Aid in Scientific Research (No. 21591948, 211160) from The Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and Research Grant for Intractable Diseases from the Ministry of Health and Welfare of Japan.


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Copyright information

© ISS 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Garida Zhao
    • 1
  • Takuaki Yamamoto
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Satoshi Ikemura
    • 1
  • Yasuharu Nakashima
    • 1
  • Taro Mawatari
    • 1
  • Goro Motomura
    • 1
  • Yukihide Iwamoto
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryKyushu UniversityFukuokaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Graduate School of Medical SciencesKyushu UniversityFukuokaJapan

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