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Clinical Application of Real-Time Sonoelastography for Evaluation of Medial Epicondylitis: A Pilot Study.

The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic potential of real-time sonoelastography (RSE) in medial epicondylitis by comparing clinically diagnosed patients and patients without medial elbow pain. From July 2016 to December 2017, gray-scale sonographic findings (swelling, cortical irregularity, hypo-echogenicity, calcification and tear), color Doppler findings (hyperemia) and sonoelastographic findings (elastographic grade on a 3-point visual scale and strain ratio from two regions of interest) for 63 elbows of 56 patients were compared. Twenty-four patients with 29 imaged elbows were clinically diagnosed with medial epicondylitis, and 32 patients with 34 imaged elbows had no medial elbow pain. Cortical irregularity, hypo-echogenicity, calcification, elastographic grade and strain ratio revealed significant differences (p < 0.05). Among these, strain ratio had the highest diagnostic performance (area under the curve: 0.985). Real-time sonoelastography, which can obtain both elastographic grade and strain ratio, is valuable as a supplementary tool in the diagnosis of medial epicondylitis.

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