Standardization on Shear wave ultrasound elastography (SWUE) technical settings will not only ensure that the results are accurate, but also detect any differences over time that may be attributed to true physiological changes. The present study evaluated the variations of elastic modulus of muscle and tendon using SWUE when different technical aspects were altered. The results of this study indicated that variations of elastic modulus of muscle and tendon were found when different transducer’s pressure and region of interest (ROI)’s size were applied. No significant differences in elastic modulus of the rectus femoris muscle and patellar tendon were found with different acquisition times of the SWUE sonogram. The SWUE on the muscle and tendon should be performed with the lightest transducer’s pressure, a shorter acquisition time for the SWUE sonogram, while measuring the mean elastic modulus regardless the ROI’s size.
BackgroundPatellar tendinopathy (PT) is one of the most common knee disorders among athletes. Changes in morphology and elasticity of the painful tendon and how these relate to the self-perceived pain and dysfunction remain unclear.ObjectivesTo compare the morphology and elastic properties of patellar tendons between athlete with and without unilateral PT and to examine its association with self-perceived pain and dysfunction.MethodsIn this cross-sectional study, 33 male athletes (20 healthy and 13 with unilateral PT) were enrolled. The morphology and elastic properties of the patellar tendon were assessed by the grey and elastography mode of supersonic shear imaging (SSI) technique while the intensity of pressure pain, self-perceived pain and dysfunction were quantified with a 10-lb force to the most painful site and the Victorian Institute of Sport Assessment-patella (VISA-P) questionnaire, respectively.ResultsIn athletes with unilateral PT, the painful tendons had higher shear elastic modulus (SEM) and larger tendon than the non-painful side (p<0.05) or the dominant side of the healthy athletes (p<0.05). Significant correlations were found between tendon SEM ratio (SEM of painful over non-painful tendon) and the intensity of pressure pain (rho = 0.62; p = 0.024), VISA-P scores (rho = −0.61; p = 0.026), and the sub-scores of the VISA-P scores on going down stairs, lunge, single leg hopping and squatting (rho ranged from −0.63 to −0.67; p<0.05).ConclusionsAthletes with unilateral PT had stiffer and larger tendon on the painful side than the non-painful side and the dominant side of healthy athletes. No significant differences on the patellar tendon morphology and elastic properties were detected between the dominant and non-dominant knees of the healthy control. The ratio of the SEM of painful to non-painful sides was associated with pain and dysfunction among athletes with unilateral PT.
Characterization of the elastic properties of a tendon could enhance the diagnosis and treatment of tendon injuries. The purpose of this study was to examine the correlation between the shear elastic modulus on the patellar tendon captured from a Supersonic Shear Imaging (SSI) and the tangent traction modulus computed from a Material testing system (MTS) on 8 fresh patellar pig tendons (Experiment I). Test–retest reliability of the shear elastic modulus captured from the SSI was established in Experiment II on 22 patellar tendons of 11 healthy human subjects using the SSI. Spearman Correlation coefficients for the shear elastic modulus and tangent traction modulus ranged from 0.82 to 1.00 (all p<0.05) on the 8 tendons. The intra and inter-operator reliabilities were 0.98 (95% CI: 0.93–0.99) and 0.97 (95% CI: 0.93–0.98) respectively. The results from this study demonstrate that the shear elastic modulus of the patellar tendon measured by the SSI is related to the tangent traction modulus quantified by the MTS. The SSI shows good intra and inter-operator repeatability. Therefore, the present study shows that SSI can be used to assess elastic properties of a tendon.
Participation in TKD appears to speed up the development of postural control and vestibular function in adolescents. Clinicians might advocate TKD exercise as a therapeutic intervention for young people with balance or vestibular dysfunctions.
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