Amyloid Arthropathy - a Cause of an Asymptomatic Hip Mass

Full Article

G Soo, KK Lau

Hong Kong J Radiol 2009;12:12-5

Dialysis-related beta-2-microglobulin amyloidosis is a well-recognised complication of long-term haemodialysis. The joints are preferentially affected. Most patients with amyloid arthropathy are asymptomatic, with the first symptom usually presenting as a highly morbid complication such as pathological fracture. Radiological findings precede clinical findings, therefore, greater awareness of amyloid as a cause of joint abnormality in patients undergoing haemodialysis will promote earlier radiological diagnosis and prevent further unnecessary investigations. Conventional imaging, including bone scan, is non-specific and non-sensitive. However, indium-labelled beta-2-microglobulin scans offer the prospect of better detection rates in the future. This report is of a patient with asymptomatic amyloid arthropathy of the hip joint, which is intended to heighten awareness of this condition.