Lateral patellar dislocation (LPD) is a common cause of acute traumatic hemarthrosis in young active patients. However, dislocation is usually transient, and patients are frequently unaware that it has occurred. Characteristic MRI findings include joint effusion and contusion or osteochondral injury of the anterolateral portion of the lateral femoral condyle and medial patella. Injury to the medial stabilizers of the patella is also identified as disruption of the medial retinaculum at its patellar attachment or midsubstance.
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