JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Deficits of ankle muscle strength not found in children, adolescents and young adults with haemophilic ankle arthropathy.

OBJECTIVES: Adequate management of haemophilia patients requires early detection of joint impairment in relatively asymptomatic patients. This study sought to quantify the impact of the ankle's structural impairment on muscle strength in children, adolescent and young adults with haemophilia (CAAwH).

METHODS: Twenty-three CAAwH underwent bilateral magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) assessing the anatomical status of tibiotalar joint (TTJ) and subtalar joint (STJ) using the International Prophylaxis Study Group MRI scale. An isokinetic dynamometer enabled a detailed evaluation of muscle strength at slow and fast speed. In parallel, 10 typically developing healthy boys (TDB) participated in a 1-week interval test-retest assessment to assess the test's reliability.

RESULTS: Forty-six MRI ankle scores were obtained, with 11 patients unilaterally affected and one bilaterally. Of the 13 affected feet, nine showed abnormalities at TTJ, three at the posterior STJ and the remaining one at both joints. Muscle strength was not reduced in CAAwH exhibiting TTJ and/or STJ arthropathy, as compared to healthy TDB, nor was there any difference between the CAAwH's affected or unaffected sides.

CONCLUSION: Contrarily to adult patients, CAAwH with repeated ankle bleeding may be less impaired than current structural evaluations imply, with possibly a latency between the occurrence of structural and functional damage.

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