Diagnostic accuracy of ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging in detecting Stener lesions of the thumb: systematic review and meta-analysis

Zahi Qamhawi, Karishma Shah, Gareth Kiernan, Dominic Furniss, James Teh, Christine Azzopardi
Journal of Hand Surgery, European Volume 2021, 46 (9): 946-953
This study assesses the diagnostic accuracy of ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in diagnosing Stener lesions of the thumb. MEDLINE, PubMed, Embase and Cochrane CENTRAL were searched for studies using ultrasound or MRI to detect Stener lesions following suspected thumb ulnar collateral ligament injuries. The reference standard was surgical exploration or clinical joint stability. Risk of bias was assessed using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies tool. A random-effects bivariate meta-analysis was used to estimate pooled sensitivity and specificity. Forest plots were generated. Nine ultrasound (315 thumbs) and six MRI (107 thumbs) studies were included in meta-analysis (all high risk of bias). Pooled sensitivity and specificity for ultrasound were 95% and 94%, and for MRI were 93% and 98%. Both ultrasound and MRI demonstrate high diagnostic accuracy in detecting Stener lesions. Ultrasound is an appropriate first-line imaging modality.

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