Gondim Teixeira PA, Omoumi P, Trudell DJ, Ward SR, Blum A, Resnick DL.
The anterior oblique ligament is one of the main stabilizers of the
trapeziometacarpal joint. Insufficiency of this ligament is closely linked to
degenerative joint disease. High-resolution musculoskeletal ultrasound has
advantages over magnetic resonance imaging (availability, dynamic nature, cost,
patient comfort). This study evaluates the feasibility of ultrasound of the
anterior oblique ligament.
MATERIAL AND METHODS:
Ten cadaveric thumb specimens and 10 volunteers with normal
trapeziometacarpal joints underwent imaging with high-frequency ultrasound. An
ultrasound-guided, progressive dissection technique was used to confirm the
ultrasound findings. Two radiologists reviewed the images in consensus. The
detectability of the ligament was rated.
The anterior oblique ligament was identified and measured in 90% of the
specimens and 100% of the volunteers. The ultrasound findings correlated well
with the dissections. This ligament appeared as a thin hypoechogenic structure in
the ulnar-most part of the trapeziometacarpal joint, with a thickness that varied
from 1.0 to 2.0 mm. Detectability of this ligament was good in 66% of the
specimens and 100% of the volunteers.
Ultrasound evaluation of the anterior oblique ligament of the
trapeziometacarpal joint is feasible with state of the art equipment.
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