Non-ionic CT contrast solutions rapidly alter bovine cartilage and meniscus mechanics

Eva G. Baylon, Hollis A. Crowder, Garry E. Gold, Marc E. Levenston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective To evaluate effects of a common CT contrast agent (iohexol) on the mechanical behaviors of cartilage and meniscus. Methods Indentation responses of juvenile bovine cartilage and meniscus were monitored following exposure to undiluted contrast agent (100% CA), 50% CA/water, 50% CA/Phosphate Buffered Saline (PBS) or PBS alone, and during re-equilibration in PBS. The normalized peak force, effective osmotic strain (εosm), and normalized effective contact modulus were calculated for every cycle, with time constants determined for both exposure and recovery via mono- or biexponential fits to. Results All cartilage CA groups exhibited long-term increases in following exposure, although the hyperosmolal 100% CA and 50% CA/PBS groups showed an initial transient decrease. Meniscus presented opposing trends, with decreasing for all CA groups. Re-equilibration in PBS for 1hr after exposure to 100% CA did not produce recovery to baseline in either tissue. The recovery time for meniscus was substantially longer than that of cartilage. increased with CA exposure time for cartilage but decreased for meniscus, suggesting an increased effective stiffness for cartilage and decreased stiffness for meniscus. Long-term changes to εosm in both tissues were consistent with changes in. Conclusion Exposure to iohexol solutions affected joint tissues differentially, with increased cartilage stiffness, likely relating to competing hyperosmotic and hypotonic interactions with tissue fixed charges, and decreased meniscus stiffness, likely dominated by hyperosmolarity. These altered tissue mechanics could allow non-physiological deformation during ambulatory weight-bearing, resulting in an increased risk of tissue or cell damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalUnknown Journal
StatePublished - Dec 13 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Cartilage
  • Contact modulus
  • Contrast agent
  • Meniscus
  • Osmolality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Non-ionic CT contrast solutions rapidly alter bovine cartilage and meniscus mechanics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this