Tufts University Researchers Find New Way of Diagnosing Arthritis

Researchers from the School of Medicine at Tufts University- an NEC member- have made an exciting new discovery which could change how doctors diagnose arthritis.

The team of researchers was able to track the progression of arthritis by inserting a fluorescent probe into the knees of mice. The probe detects cartilage loss in the joint by looking at the area with optical imaging. As the disease progressed, the probe became brighter, signaling increased cartilage loss. Researchers are hopeful this imaging will allow doctors to diagnose and treat the disease earlier and more effectively.

“Patients are frequently in pain by the time osteoarthritis is diagnosed. The imaging tests most frequently used, X-rays, don’t indicate the level of pain or allow us to directly see the amount of cartilage loss, which is a challenge for physicians and patients,” said Averi A. Leahy, an M.D/Ph.D. student in the medical scientist training program at Tufts University School of Medicine and the Sakler School, and co-first author of a study on the research published in the February issue of Arthritis & Rheumatology.

The New England Council applauds Tufts University for its important work to alleviate the suffering of the 27 million Americans diagnosed with arthritis.

For more information, please see the Tufts University press release.

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