What is the role of MRI in the evaluation of rib fracture?

Updated: Jun 13, 2017
  • Author: Sarah L Melendez, MD; Chief Editor: Trevor John Mills, MD, MPH  more...
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Answer

Although MRI is not used as a primary means of detecting rib fractures, displaced or angulated lateral rib fractures as well as posterior rib fractures can be detected by MRI.

Breathing motion can cause artifacts, resulting in nondiagnostic MRIs of anterior rib fractures.

Partial-volume effects may result in a false suggestion of a nondisplaced rib fracture.


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