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Why did your doctor order an MRI of your knee after an accident? | Guy S. DiMartino DC, JD, PA

June 6, 2013

Why did your doctor order an MRI for your knee after a Florida accident?

You were injured in an accident where you injured your knee. Now it is swollen and stiff and youre having difficulty walking. Your doctor just ordered an MRI – what is he/she looking for?

MRI of the knee

MRI or magnetic resonance imaging is a non-invasive diagnostic imaging test. It is the diagnostic test of choice to look at the soft tissue structures in the knee. The knee joint has a number of soft tissue structures that can be injured in an accident including:

  • Medial and lateral collateral ligaments

  • Anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments

  • Patella (knee cap tendon)

  • Medial and lateral meniscus (cartilage)

Collateral Ligaments

Ligaments attach bone to bone and give structure and support to the joint. The collateral ligaments check side to side movement of the knee.

Cruciate Ligaments

The cruciate ligaments are in the inside of the knee. They run from the femur (thigh bone) to the tibia (shin bone). The cruciate ligaments check front and back gliding of the femur on the tibia.

Patella Tendon

The patella tendon houses the knee cap. This tendon acts like a fulcrum for flexion and extension of the knee (bending and straightening the knee).


The menisci are cartilage within the knee joint. There are two, the medial and lateral. They sit on top of the tibia and provide a cushion and surface for the femur and tibia to articulate.

So, your doctor is looking to see if there is a tear or disruption of these soft tissue structures in the knee. If you have any questions about a Florida accident, you can call me directly on my cell at 352-267-9168 or fill out the internet consultation form on the right.