Test-Retest Reliability of Muscle Thickness, Echo-Intensity and Cross Sectional Area of Quadriceps and Hamstrings Muscle Groups Using B-mode Ultrasound

Cassio V. Ruas, Ronei S. Pinto, Camila D. Lima, Pablo B. Costa, Lee E. Brown


Ultrasound muscle images have been extensively used as tools for investigating, diagnosing and monitoring thigh muscles. However, there is a lack of information examining ultrasound reliability of quadriceps and hamstrings images for research and clinical use. Objectives: To determine the reliability of muscle thickness (MT), echo intensity (EI) and cross sectional area (CSA) of quadriceps and hamstrings muscle groups. Methods: Single transverse images of the rectus femoris (RF), vastus intermedius (VI), vastus medialis (VM), vastus lateralis (VL), biceps femoris long head (BFlh), semitendinosus (ST), and semimembranosus (SM) muscles were scanned in the right and left legs of ten healthy collegiate men (age 23.4 ± 2.2 yrs, mass 71.7 ± 11.7 kg, height 1.73 ± 0.06 m) between two sessions with one day interval. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs), standard error of measurement (SEM), and minimum difference to be considered “real” (MD) were measured for MT, EI, and CSA. Results: A range of 0.97-0.99, 0.83-0.88, and 0.86-0.97 (ICC); 0.72-1.38, 2.73-3.41, and 0.36-1.04 (SEM); and 2.01-3.82, 7.56-9.46, and 0.99-2.89 (MD) were found for quadriceps muscles, and 0.93-0.99, 0.74-0.90, and 0.89-0.96 (ICC); 0.73-1.94, 3.29-4.98, and 0.69-1.08 (SEM); and 2.03-5.38, 9.13-13.81, and 1.91-2.98 (MD) were found for hamstrings muscles. Conclusions: These results suggest that ultrasound imaging of both quadriceps and hamstrings muscle architecture is a reliable technique for assessing thigh musculoskeletal tissue. The anatomical sites, as well as ultrasound adjustments, images, and results utilized here may assist future researchers and clinicians as reference tools when measuring quadriceps and hamstrings musculature.



Ultrasonography, Consistency, Reflection, Structure, Size, Quality

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/aiac.ijkss.v.5n.1p.35


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