Semin Musculoskelet Radiol 2018; 22(02): 197-206
DOI: 10.1055/s-0038-1639472
Review Article
Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

Anterior Chest Wall in Axial Spondyloarthritis: Imaging, Interpretation, and Differential Diagnosis

Winston J. Rennie
1   Department of Radiology, Leicester Royal Infirmary, University Hospitals of Leicester, Leicester, United Kingdom
Lennart Jans
2   Department of Radiology, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent, Belgium
Anne Grethe Jurik
3   Division of Radiology, Department of Clinical Medicine, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark
Iwona Sudoł-Szopińska
4   Department of Radiology, National Institute of Geriatrics, Rheumatology and Rehabilitation, Warsaw, Poland
Claudia Schueller-Weidekamm
5   Division of Neuroradiology and Musculoskeletal Radiology, Department of Biomedical Imaging und Image-guided Therapy, Medical University of Vienna/Vienna General Hospital, Vienna, Austria
Iris Eshed
6   Department of Radiology, Sheba Medical Center, Affiliated to the Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
19 April 2018 (online)


Anterior chest wall (ACW) inflammation is not an uncommon finding in patients with axial spondyloarthritis (ax-SpA) and reportedly occurs in 26% of these patients. Radiologists may only be familiar with spinal and peripheral joint imaging, possibly due to the inherent challenges of ACW imaging on some cross-sectional imaging modalities. Knowledge of relevant joint anatomy and the location of sites of inflammation allows the interpreting radiologist to better plan appropriate imaging tests and imaging planes. Accurate assessment of disease burden, sometimes in the absence of clinical findings, may alert the treating rheumatologist, allowing a better estimation of disease burden, increased accuracy of potential imaging scoring systems, and optimize assessment and response to treatment. This article reviews salient anatomy and various imaging modalities to optimize diagnosis, important differential diagnoses, and the interpretation of ACW imaging findings in ax-SpA.