Medial Gastrocnemius Muscle–Tendon Junction and Fascicle Lengthening across the Range of Motion Analyzed in 2-D and 3-D Ultrasound Images

Francesco Cenni*, Lynn Bar-On, Simon Henri Schless, Barbara Kalkman, Erwin Aertbelien, Herman Bruyninckx, Kaat Desloovere

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Ultrasound imaging modalities offer a clinically viable method to visualize musculoskeletal structures. However, proper data comparison between investigations is compromised because of a lack of measurement error documentation and method standardization. This investigation analyzes the reliability and validity of extracting medial gastrocnemius belly and fascicle lengths and pennation angles in different ankle joint positions, across the full range of motion, in a cohort of 11 children with spastic cerebral palsy and 11 typically developed children. Each of these parameters was extracted from two consecutive acquisitions, using both 2-D and 3-D ultrasound images. The findings suggest that the muscle tendon junction extraction in 2-D images can be a suitable parameter for analyzing medial gastrocnemius muscle length in typically developed children and children with spastic cerebral palsy, although averaging over multiple measurements is recommended to reduce variability. More caution should be taken when performing analyses based on fascicle length.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2505-2518
Number of pages14
JournalUltrasound in Medicine and Biology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018

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