Page 22 - Imaging of Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis in Hand Joints
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                                Chapter 1
for clinical management of early RA advise the use of CR, US and MRI when in clinical doubt of diagnosing RA, as this can improve certainty of diagnosis. 16 However, the role of MRI and US in diagnosing RA is still unsure. They seem to raise sensitivity but decrease specificity.
Of these two methods MRI is considered to be the most sensitive method for imaging synovitis. A large variation of MRI machines is available with higher- end MRI machines creating better images. However it is still unclear how the diagnostic capability of lower-cost extremity MRI compares to normal clinical MRI in patients with early unclassified arthritis and arthralgia, or how these machines compare to ultrasound. In chapter 6 we therefore compare normal high field MRI and low field extremity MRI for erosions, synovitis and bone marrow edema and compare with ultrasound for detection of synovitis and MCP erosions.
The aims of this thesis can be summarized as:
- to assess construct validity and reliability of direct cartilage
imaging with MRI in hand OA.
- to asses if CT has better reliability and detection rate of thumb
base OA than conventional radiography.
- to assess construct validity of low-field extremity MRI in early
arthritis patients.

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