Magnetic resonance imaging is performed more commonly on the knee than on any other joint, and it is an excellent diagnostic tool that can aid in the evaluation of a host of sports-related injuries involving the ligaments, tendons, menisci, osseous structures, and articular surfaces. A thorough evaluation of the images, however, can be a daunting task, as the study often contains dozens of images obtained with multiple pulse sequences and in several imaging planes. A systematic approach will facilitate an accurate and timely evaluation of this complex examination and will ensure that all of the clinically relevant structures are adequately assessed. This article will provide a systematic approach to the interpretation of a magnetic resonance examination of the knee. The normal imaging appearance of each anatomical structure will be described, and the optimal pulse sequence and imaging plane for the evaluation of each structure will be discussed. Finally, the signs of injury will be described and illustrated.

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