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We made a prospective study of 58 patients with suspected internal derangement of the knee. They were examined by magnetic resonance imaging using 3-D gradient echo intermediate-weighted studies before having an arthroscopy. The preoperative clinical assessment was found to have a diagnostic sensitivity of 77% and a specificity of 43%, compared with 100% and 63% respectively for magnetic resonance imaging. Comparison of magnetic resonance imaging and arthroscopy confirmed the accuracy of magnetic resonance imaging in the diagnosis of internal derangement but the results for articular cartilage lesions were much less good, with a sensitivity of only 18% but a specificity of 100%. Acceptance of the magnetic resonance imaging findings could have resulted in a 29% reduction in the number of arthroscopies without missing any significant meniscal lesion.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery - Series B

Publication Date





49 - 52