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To investigate muscle stiffness in patients with idiopathic inflammatory myopathies (IIM) using shear wave elastography (SWE) and to correlate the results with muscle strength and MRI features of myositis.
Muscle shear wave velocity (SWV) was measured in 23 active IIM patients (13 females, mean age 50.4 ± 16.1 years) and 23 matched healthy controls (13 females, mean age 50.7 ± 16.2 years). The investigated muscles included the vastus lateralis (VL), rectus femoris (RF), vastus medialis (VM) vastus intermedius (VI), biceps femoris (BF), semitendinosus (ST), semimembranosus (SM) and the biceps brachii (BB) scanned during relaxed resting and passive stretching positions. Participants performed multiple tests to evaluate their muscle strength. IIM patients had a thigh MRI to assess degrees of oedema, fatty infiltration and atrophy.
In the resting position, IIM patients had a 12.9–22.2% significantly lower SWV (p < 0.05) for the quadriceps and hamstrings, but not BB. There was no difference during passive stretching. The SWV for VL, VI and BF showed moderate correlations with the muscle strength tests ranging from r = 0.47 to r = 0.70 (all p < 0.05). Lower SWV was associated with greater MRI scores of oedema (p = 0.001) and atrophy (p = 0.006). However, SWV did not correlate with fatty infiltration (r < 0.3; p = 0.28), creatine kinase (r = 0.28; p = 0.19) or disease duration (r = 0.26; p = 0.24).
Shear wave elastography may detect abnormal reduced thigh stiffness in IIM patients. SWE measurements were significantly associated with muscle weakness and MRI signs of oedema and atrophy. Future research should investigate this new technology for monitoring disease activity.
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- Muscle shear wave elastography in idiopathic inflammatory myopathies: a case–control study with MRI correlation
Abdulrahman M. Alfuraih
Ai Lyn Tan
Elizabeth M. A. Hensor
Richard J. Wakefield
- Springer Berlin Heidelberg
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