Evaluation Study
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Imaging of adult flatfoot: correlation of radiographic measurements with MRI.

OBJECTIVE. The purpose of this study is to determine whether radiographic foot measurements can predict injury of the posterior tibial tendon (PTT) and the supporting structures of the medial longitudinal arch as diagnosed on MRI. MATERIALS AND METHODS. After institutional review board approval, 100 consecutive patients with radiographic and MRI examinations performed within a 2-month period were enrolled. Thirty-one patients had PTT dysfunction clinically, and 69 patients had other causes of ankle pain. Talonavicular uncoverage angle, incongruency angle, calcaneal pitch angle, Meary angle, cuneiform-to-fifth metatarsal height, and talar tilt were calculated on standing foot or ankle radiographs. MRI was used to assess for abnormalities of the PTT (tenosynovitis, tendinosis, and tear) and supporting structures of the medial longitudinal arch (spring ligament, deltoid ligament, and sinus tarsi). Statistical analysis was performed using the chi-square and Fisher exact tests for categoric variables; the Student t test was used for continuous variables. RESULTS. There was a statistically significant association of PTT tear with abnormal talonavicular uncoverage angle, calcaneal pitch angle, Meary angle, and cuneiform-to-fifth metatarsal height. PTT tendinosis and isolated tenosynovitis had a poor association with most radiologic measurements. If both calcaneal pitch and Meary angles were normal, no PTT tear was present. An abnormal calcaneal pitch angle had the best association with injury to the supporting medial longitudinal arch structures. CONCLUSION. Radiographic measurements, especially calcaneal pitch and Meary angles, can be useful in detecting PTT tears. Calcaneal pitch angle provides the best assessment of injury to the supporting structures of the medial longitudinal arch.

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