What is the normal MRI appearance of the wrist?
The predominant signal intensity of normal bone marrow is the same as that of the subcutaneous fat and is generally bright unless specific measures have been taken to suppress it. Cortical bone has very low signal intensity on all standard imaging sequences. Cancellous bone is seen as a fine network with very low signal intensity within the fatlike signal intensity of the bone marrow. Normal tendons, normal ligaments, and the TFCC demonstrate low signal intensity on all MRI sequences, although small foci of mildly increased signal intensity, believed to represent mild degeneration, are seen with increasing frequency in asymptomatic patients of increasing age. The clinical significance of such foci must be considered in the patient’s clinical context. Nerves appear similar to skeletal muscle on T1-weighted and proton density (PD)-weighted images and brighter than skeletal muscle on T2-weighted images, although the degree of brightness on T2-weighted images is variable such that the distinction between normal and abnormal can be problematic