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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Magnetic resonance imaging of plantar plate rupture.

  • Author(s): Yao, L
  • Cracchiolo, A
  • Farahani, K
  • Seeger, LL
  • et al.

Degenerative plantar plate failure is an under-recognized cause of lesser metatarsalgia. We performed magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with a small receiver coil in 13 patients in whom plantar plate ruptures of the second or third metatarsophalangeal joint were clinically suspected. In eight patients, MRI showed focal hyperintensity in the plantar plate that was interpreted as a rupture of the plate. Ruptures were confirmed in all five patients who underwent an operative procedure to treat the unstable, painful metatarsophalangeal joint. MRI is a noninvasive technique that can visualize plantar plate abnormalities and aid the clinical evaluation of problematic lesser metatarsalgia.

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