Diabetes mellitus seems to be a risk factor for developing early osteoarthritis (OA), with an accelerated degeneration of the articular cartilage in the knee, according to a recent study. 196 diabetics from the Osteoarthritis Initiative cohort were matched in small sets for age, sex, BMI, and Kellgren-Lawrence (KL) score with 196 non-diabetic controls. Knee cartilage semi-automatic segmentation was performed on 2D multi-slice, multi-echo, spin-echo sequences. Researchers found:
- Both study groups were similar in age (63.3 vs 63.0 years), BMI (30.9 vs 31.2 kg/m2), sex (female 53.6% vs male 54.1%), and KL score distribution.
- In diabetics, except for the patella, all compartments showed a significantly higher increase in mean T2 values when compared to non-diabetic controls.
- Global T2 values increased almost twice as much; 1.77ms vs 0.98ms.
- Additionally, global T2 values showed a significantly higher increase in the bone layer, and in a separate analysis of the texture parameters, diabetics also showed consistently higher texture values, indicating a more disordered cartilage composition.
Neumann J, Hofmann FC, Heilmeier U, et al. Type 2 diabetes patients have accelerated cartilage matrix degeneration compared to diabetes free controls: Data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative. [Published online ahead of print March 29, 2018]. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. doi:10.1016/j.joca.2018.03.010.