Muscle contracture diagnosis: the role of sonoelastography

J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2016 Dec;56(12):1518-1525. Epub 2016 Mar 18.


Background: Sonoelastography plays today a major role in musculoskeletal disease, showing minor muscle injuries not well appreciable in conventional B-mode ultrasonography and integrating it in major muscle injuries diagnosis. The aim of this study was to demonstrate the ability of elastosonography in the diagnosis of muscular contracture in football players presenting negative basic echography.

Methods: We examined twenty-two football players using basic echography and elastosonography approximately 24-48 hours after the traumatic event and we subsequently re-evaluated them after two weeks.

Results: Conventional echography showed, in the early stage, no muscle injuries; in twenty-two out of twenty-two patients, sonoelastography had instead underlined a heterogeneous colorimetric map, related to decreased elasticity in the area of the muscle contracture. An evaluation effected 1-2 weeks later showed a clear improvement of the sonoelastographic appearance.

Conclusions: This information will be useful for prognostication, post-traumatic monitoring and to detect subclinical changes in MIs even before there are changes on the routine B-mode ultrasound.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Contracture / diagnosis*
  • Contracture / diagnostic imaging*
  • Elasticity Imaging Techniques*
  • Humans
  • Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted
  • Muscle, Skeletal / diagnostic imaging*
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Soccer
  • Sports Medicine / methods*
  • Ultrasonography