Current rehabilitation applications for shoulder ultrasound imaging

J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2015 May;45(5):394-405. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2015.4232. Epub 2015 Jan 27.


The available body of knowledge on shoulder ultrasound imaging has grown considerably within the past decade, and physical therapists are among the many health care professions currently exploring the potential clinical integration of this imaging technology and the knowledge derived from it. Therefore, the primary purpose of this commentary was to review the recent evidence and emerging uses of ultrasound imaging for the clinical evaluation of shoulder disorders. This includes a detailed description of common measurement techniques along with their known clinimetric properties. Specifically provided are critical appraisals of the existing measures used to estimate soft tissue and bony morphometry, muscle contractile states, and lean muscle density. These appraisals are intended to help clinicians clarify the scope of physical therapy practice for which these measurement techniques are effectively utilized and to highlight areas in need of further development.

Keywords: rehabilitation; rotator cuff; ultrasonography.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acromion / diagnostic imaging
  • Adipose Tissue / diagnostic imaging
  • Humans
  • Humerus / diagnostic imaging
  • Muscle Fibers, Skeletal / diagnostic imaging
  • Muscle, Skeletal / diagnostic imaging
  • Muscular Atrophy / diagnostic imaging
  • Physical Therapy Modalities*
  • Rotator Cuff / diagnostic imaging
  • Shoulder Joint / physiopathology
  • Shoulder Pain / diagnostic imaging*
  • Shoulder Pain / physiopathology
  • Shoulder Pain / rehabilitation*
  • Torsion Abnormality
  • Ultrasonography