A member asked:

Can the age of a damaged acl in the knee be determined by a mri scan.

6 doctors weighed in across 3 answers
Dr. Paul Velt answered

Specializes in Diagnostic Radiology

Not really: The MRI is very good at saying it's torn. As with many things, not when it occurred.

Answered 6/21/2014

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Dr. Peter Nefcy answered

Specializes in Radiology

Maybe: If the ACL tear is acute, then there is edema and some frayed ends in and around the ligament. After a while, there is some healing. If there is a chronic tear, but accompanied by a significant joint effusion and synovitis, then it is difficult to determine the age. An ACL tear without much effusion or edema can be classified as remote. Physical exam will confirm the diagnosis of ACL tear.

Answered 8/29/2014

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Dr. Brian Sabb answered

Specializes in Sports Medicine

Yes: Hi Jamie, excellent ?. Diagnosing ACL tear is the first step on the MRI. They can be partial or full thickness. They can be acute or chronic (remote). MRI can make the diagnosis and should be able to make the distinctions above. It may depend on how good the MRI is and on how experienced the radiologist is, but that distinction is possible. good luck.

Answered 9/24/2017

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