Ultrasound investigation of the glenohumeral joint by anterior access in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and healthy controls

Alexander P. Rozin, Kohava Toledano, Amir Dagan, Alexandra Balbir-Gurman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: The aim of this study was to measure glenohumeral joint (GHJ) parameters via the anterior access through ultrasound and to compare to data from posterior and inferior accesses. Material/Methods: Twenty healthy controls (M: F=15: 5, aged 45.1±11.2 years) and 16 patients (M: F=5: 11, aged 54.6±14.7 years) with active rheumatoid arthritis (RA) (DAS 28 4.6±1.2) were investigated (SonoSite-Titan). To make the GHJ visible on the anterior access, we used the original GHJ opening maneuver. The GHJ width was measured for every transducer position at 2 points. The positions were: posterior transversal, inferior longitudinal, anterior longitudinal along the articular line, anterior transversal upper, middle and lower. The joint width included thickness of cartilage plus synovial fluid/pannus. Rotator interval (RI) width and height (upper biceps channel) were measured. Results: Our normal GHJ values by posterior and inferior accesses were within previously estimated values (<2 mm and <3 mm, respectively). We acquired the first values of GHJ width from the anterior access. The last were within a range of 0.7–1.7 mm for healthy controls. Patients with RA showed significantly enlarged joint cavities. RI was not inflamed. Posterior and inferior data of GHJ width were significantly correlated (p=0.01). The data did not correlate with anterior values (p=+0.44, p=–0.56). Synovitis was much more prominent in posterior, upper anterior transversal, and anterior longitudinal accesses. Conclusions: The GHJ may be visualized by anterior access using a special maneuver. Synovitis in the anterior region of the GHJ may develop at an independent rate. Anterior GHJ sonography may be complementary to the classic access.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)533-541
Number of pages9
JournalMedical Science Monitor
Volume21
DOIs
StatePublished - 18 Feb 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Shoulder joint
  • Synovitis
  • Ultrasonography

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