Osteoarthritis (OA) is a serious and frequently occuring outcome of untreated scapholunate dissocation, the most common form of carpal instability in the wrist [1]. As cartilage degenerates, the water content of surrounding tissue becomes less bound. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) T2 relaxation time is longer when water content is less bound [2]. MRI offers the advantageous combination of detailed images of soft tissues such as cartilage with the ability to evaluate free water content. Contrasting the various T2 relaxation times found in the cartilage of healthy wrist surfaces with those of injured wrists is thereby proposed as a method of evaluating cartilage degeneration. We hypothesized that T2 values obtained would be longer for the cartilage of the injured wrists. Though surgical treatment may relieve pain and restore some function to the wrist, it is hypothesized that T2 relaxation time will remain increased after surgery as cartilage regeneration is a very slow process, if it happens at all. The goal of this research is to provide a method to evaluate the biochemical and infer the biomechanical integrity of cartilage for various cartilage surfaces in a wrist after injury.

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