What is the role of MRI in the diagnosis of aplastic anemia?

Updated: Jan 29, 2021
  • Author: Sameer Bakhshi, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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Answer

Although aplastic anemia is characterized by hypocellularity of bone marrow, a small minority of patients have pockets of hypercellularity, and a bone marrow biopsy may give misleading results if the sample is taken from one of those hypercellular areas. Overall bone marrow cellularity may be assessed by evaluation of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of the marrow areas of the axial skeleton.

Matcuk et al reported that calculations of bone marrow cellularity based on T1 signal intensity measurements from MRI show statistically significant correlation with determinations of cellularity from bone marrow biopsy. Cellularity increased from T11 to S1 and decreased with patient age. [65]


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