Sonographic measurement of Achilles tendons in asymptomatic subjects: Variation with age, body height, and dominance of ankle

Beatrice S.F. Pang, Tin Cheung Ying

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective. This study was undertaken to evaluate the thickness, cross-sectional area, and length of Achilles tendons in asymptomatic subjects of different age groups and heights and between dominant and nondominant ankles. Methods. High-resolution sonographic examinations of Achilles tendons were performed in 40 healthy subjects (14 men and 26 women). The subjects were categorized into 4 age groups: (1) 20 to 29 years, (2) 30 to 39 years, (3) 40 to 49 years, and (4) 50 years or older. The thickness, cross-sectional area, and length of the Achilles tendons of both ankles were measured. All Achilles tendons were measured with the ankle in a relaxed, neutral position. Results. There was no significant difference in the thickness and length of Achilles tendons among subjects of different age groups (P > .05). The Achilles tendon cross-sectional area of subjects 50 years or older was significantly larger than that of subjects in the younger age groups (P < .05). There was a positive correlation between the height of the subjects and the length, thickness, and cross-sectional area of the Achilles tendons; however, the correlation coefficient was low (r = 0.07-0.28; P > .05). Dominance of ankles did not affect the thickness and length of the Achilles tendons, whereas the cross-sectional area of the tendons was significantly larger in the dominant ankles (P < .05). Conclusions. Sonography is a useful imaging tool in the evaluation of Achilles tendons. Normal variations of the tendon morphologic characteristics should be considered in the clinical diagnosis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1291-1296
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Ultrasound in Medicine
Volume25
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006

Keywords

  • Achilles tendon
  • Age
  • Body height
  • Dominance of ankle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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