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Abstract

Introduction: The literature reports an increase in anteroposterior diameter of the common extensor origin (CEO) of the extensor carpi radialis brevis (ECRB) and extensor digitorum communis (EDC) or the radial nerve in painful elbows diagnosed with lateral epicondylalgia (LE) or supinator syndrome. The edge-to-edge measurements of these anatomical structures are quantified using musculoskeletal ultrasound (MSUS). However, in the current literature, reports on the reliability and validity of MSUS measurements of the CEO (of ECRB and EDC) and the radial nerve are not found. In this study, reliability was measured for three testers in determining the anteroposterior diameter of the CEO (of ECRB and EDC) and the radial nerve. Moreover, the concurrent validity was determined of MSUS measurements with Vernier calipre measurements using formalin preserved elbows of human cadavers. Methodology: Cadaver measurements of the CEO (of ECRB and EDC) and the radial nerve were performed. Initially, the sonologist measured the anteroposterior diameter of the CEO (of ECRB and EDC) and the radial nerve. A month after scan, the formalin preserved cadavers were dissected. Consequently, the anteroposterior diameter of the exposed CEO (of ECRB and EDC) and the radial nerve was measured using the Vernier calipre. Results: Eight upper extremities of four embalmed Filipino cadavers (2 males: 2 females) were dissected. A total of seven (7) CEO of EDC, seven (7) CEO of ECRB, and eight (8) radial nerves at the level of the radial head in the elbows of four (4) cadavers were measured using the MSUS and the Vernier calipre. The MSUS and Vernier calipre protocol used in this study was found to be reliable, p > 0.05. However, in all three levels of interest, the MSUS measurements were statistically different from the Vernier calipre measurements, p < 0.05. Conclusion: MSUS and Vernier calipre measurements are reliable methods in measuring the CEO (of ECRB and EDC) and the radial nerve. While each of these methods is reliable in measuring the anteroposterior dimensions of the CEO (of the EDC and ECRB) and the radial nerve, substituting one for the other yielded statistically different measurement results.

Author Bio(s)

  • Valentin Dones III, PhD, Is a researcher with the International Centre for Allied Health Evidence at the University of South Australia in Adelaide, South Australia. He is also is an Assistant Professor, with the Centre for Health Research on Movement Sciences at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila.
  • Ian P. Aguinaldo, MSPT, PTRP, is an Instructor with the College of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila.
  • Svetlana Maris Aycardo, MD, is a Rehabilitation Specialist with the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila.
  • Buena Fe Apepe, MD is a Chair, Department of Anatomy with the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila.

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