Tram-track appearance of the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL): correlations with mucoid degeneration, ligamentous stability, and differentiation from PCL tears.

Journal Article


The purpose of our study was to describe the MRI findings in the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) analogous to mucoid degeneration in the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL); to correlate MRI findings in the PCL with ligamentous stability; to differentiate the PCL tram-track appearance from the appearance of PCL tears; and to emphasize the coexistence of PCL and ACL mucoid degeneration, cruciate ganglia, and meniscal cysts.


The tram-track PCL appearance commonly coexists with ACL mucoid degeneration; ganglia; and, less frequently, meniscal cysts. Both PCL tears and MRI findings suggestive of PCL mucoid degeneration show ligament thickening and increased PCL signal intensity. Tram-track PCLs are usually asymptomatic and typically have no ligamentous instability.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • McMonagle, JS; Helms, CA; Garrett, WE; Vinson, EN

Published Date

  • August 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 201 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 394 - 399

PubMed ID

  • 23883220

Pubmed Central ID

  • 23883220

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1546-3141

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0361-803X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.2214/ajr.11.7400


  • eng