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Abstract #4002

Assessment of an In Vitro Animal Model for Intervertebral Disc Degeneration Using MR Elastography

Ephraim I Ben-Abraham 1 , Jun Chen, Ph.D. 1 , and Richard L Ehman, M.D. 1

1 Radiology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, United States

Low back pain (LBP) is a very costly and prevalent health disorder in the U.S. One of the most common causes of LBP is degenerative disc disease (DDD). It is known that the stiffness of the disc changes substantially with degeneration. MRE has been demonstrated for estimating the shear stiffness of the nucleus in the intervertebral disc in vitro. In this study, we investigate the change in nucleus stiffness caused by an in vitro, enzymatically-induced animal model for disc degeneration using MRE. Our results showed a substantial increase in the nucleus shear stiffness with the induced disc degeneration.

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