Purpose: Tendon pathology around the hip is a common entity. The aim of this study was to detect tendon abnormalities around the hip in a population of asymptomatic volunteers. Materials and methods: Fifty volunteers (100 hips) referred for non-musculoskeletal conditions were evaluated with an additional coronal STIR-weighted MRI imaging on a 1.5 MR unit. This group was composed of 27 women and 23 men with a mean age of 52 (19-91 years). The images were interpreted independently by 2 musculoskeletal radiologists. All tendons around the hip were given a score from 0 to 4, with a score 0 corresponding to no abnormality, score 1 to signal alteration around the tendon, score 2 to minimal signal abnormality in the tendon, score 3 partial tear and score 4 complete rupture. The trochanteric bursa was also evaluated and its size was measured. It was also given a score from 0 to 3 (0: no abnormality, 1: slight hypersignal, 2: bursitis < 10 mm, 3: bursitis ≥ 10 mm). Results: High intratendinous signal was commonly found at the joined insertion of biceps femoris and semitendinosus (18% L, 20% R), the semimembranosus (24% L, 20% R), gluteus minimus (6% L, 11% R) and rectus femoris (9% L, 3% R). A small trochanteric bursa was seen in 33% of the volunteers on the left side and 32% on the right side. The interobserver correlation was very good with an intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.79 (CI: 0.74-0.85). Conclusion: Slight signal alterations might be found in the insertions of the rectus femoris, hamstrings and gluteus minimus tendons. A small to moderate trochanteric bursitis might also be seen. This suggests that care should be taken when interpreting MR scans to attribute symptoms to these findings.
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