MRI of the knee (an approach)

Last revised by Henry Knipe on 13 Oct 2022

Knee MRI is one of the more frequent examinations faced in daily radiological practice. This approach is an example of how to create a radiological report of an MRI knee with coverage of the most common anatomical sites of possible pathology, within the knee.

Systematic review

A systematic review in the MRI of the knee is essential since knee anatomy itself is rather complex, pathologies, and injury patterns and are manifold and only rarely lead to an abnormality of a single structure but rather show diverse findings which might need to be addressed in further patient management 1.


The bony structures of the knee, the pictured distal femur, the patella, and the proximal tibia as well the fibular head are assessed.

Joint space and capsule

Assessment of the following structures:

Intercondylar region

Assessment of the following structures:

Medial compartment

Assessment of the following structures:

Lateral compartment

Assessment of the following structures:

Patellofemoral compartment
Popliteal fossa
Soft tissues

Assessment of any relevant imaged muscles and the subcutaneous fatty tissue:

Common pathologies

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