Minimal training is required to reliably perform quantitative ultrasound of muscle
Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc., a Wiley company
- Accepted manuscript online: 12 NOV 2013 12:02AM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 6 NOV 2013
- Manuscript Revised: 22 OCT 2013
- Manuscript Received: 28 JUN 2013
- NIH. Grant Number: # R01 AR060850
- Cited By
- quantitative ultrasound;
- Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Background: Quantitative ultrasound can measure skeletal muscle pathology. We investigated whether inexperienced evaluators could obtain and analyze ultrasound images accurately.
Methods: Two examiners received a twenty-minute training session before obtaining ultrasound images of several limb muscles in 21 healthy boys and 19 with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Gray scale levels (GSL) of muscle and subcutaneous fat were then measured by 2 analysts: a trained research assistant and a radiologist. We compared results between examiners and analysts.
Results: Inter-rater reliability of muscle GSLs was high between examiners (icc ≥ 0.85) and analysts (icc ≥ 0.84). As anticipated, GSLs were higher in dystrophic than in healthy muscles (P<0.001). Fat GSLs were less reliable (icc 0.5-0.89) than muscle and increased with age and body size.
Conclusion: GSLs from ultrasound images of healthy and dystrophic skeletal muscle, but not from subcutaneous fat, can be obtained reliably and can be analyzed by inexperienced evaluators with minimal training. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.