Prevalence of Traumatic Findings on Routine MRI in a Large Cohort of Professional Fighters

Fellows’ Journal Club

Conventional 3T MR imaging was used to assess 499 fighters (boxers, mixed martial artists, and martial artists) and 62 controls for nonspecific WM changes, cerebral microhemorrhage, cavum septum pellucidum, and cavum vergae. Fighters had an increased prevalence of cerebral microhemorrhage (4.2% versus 0% for controls), cavum septum pellucidum (53.1% versus 17.7% for controls), and cavum vergae (14.4% versus 0% for controls). This study assessed MR imaging findings in a large cohort demonstrating a significantly increased prevalence of cavum septum pellucidum among fighters. Although cerebral microhemorrhages were higher in fighters than in controls, this finding was not statistically significant.

Abstract

Figure 4 from paper
Schematic diagram showing the location of all cerebral microhemorrhages observed from all 21 fighters in the study. Although 50 CMHs were observed, 2 fighters had a disproportionate share, and their CMHs have their own symbol of a cross and a triangle. The simplified diagram does not show all the sulci. Most CMHs were actually located near the cortex, and a few were located in the deep white matter.

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE

Previous studies investigating MR imaging abnormalities among fighters have had small sample sizes. This investigation assessed a large number of fighters using the same conventional sequences on the same scanner.

MATERIALS AND METHODS

Conventional 3T MR imaging was used to assess 499 fighters (boxers, mixed martial artists, and martial artists) and 62 controls for nonspecific WM changes, cerebral microhemorrhage, cavum septum pellucidum, and cavum vergae. The lengths of the cavum septum pellucidum and cavum vergae and the ratio of cavum septum pellucidum to the septum pellucidum lengths were assessed.

RESULTS

The prevalence of nonspecific WM changes was similar between groups. Fighters had a prevalence of cerebral microhemorrhage (4.2% versus 0% for controls, P = .152). Fighters had a higher prevalence of cavum septum pellucidum versus controls (53.1% versus 17.7%, P < .001) and cavum vergae versus controls (14.4% versus 0%, P < .001). The lengths of the cavum septum pellucidum plus the cavum vergae (P< .001), cavum septum pellucidum (P = .025), and cavum septum pellucidum to the septum pellucidum length ratio (P = .009) were higher in fighters than in controls. The number of fights slightly correlated with cavum septum pellucidum plus cavum vergae length (R= 0.306, P < .001) and cavum septum pellucidum length (R = 0.278, P < .001). When fighters were subdivided into boxers, mixed martial artists, and martial artists, results were similar to those in the whole-group analysis.

CONCLUSIONS

This study assessed MR imaging findings in a large cohort demonstrating a significantly increased prevalence of cavum septum pellucidum among fighters. Although cerebral microhemorrhages were higher in fighters than in controls, this finding was not statistically significant, possibly partially due to underpowering of the study.

Read this article: http://bit.ly/2uJvQGn

Prevalence of Traumatic Findings on Routine MRI in a Large Cohort of Professional Fighters
Tags:         
jross
Jeffrey Ross • Mayo Clinic, Phoenix

Dr. Jeffrey S. Ross is a Professor of Radiology at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, and practices neuroradiology at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona. His publications include over 100 peer-reviewed articles, nearly 60 non-refereed articles, 33 book chapters, and 10 books. He was an AJNR Senior Editor from 2006-2015, is a member of the editorial board for 3 other journals, and a manuscript reviewer for 10 journals. He became Editor-in-Chief of the AJNR in July 2015. He received the Gold Medal Award from the ASSR in 2013.