Introduction: Presentations to the neuromuscular clinic commonly involve hand muscle denervation, but few studies have evaluated hand muscle ultrasound. Methods: Ultrasound studies of abductor pollicis brevis, first dorsal interosseous, and abductor digit minimi were prospectively performed in a cohort of 34 patients (77 muscles) with electromyography (EMG)-confirmed denervation, compared with 58 healthy control subjects. Results: In control subjects, muscle thickness was highly reproducible [intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC)=0.88-0.98], and echogenicity was moderately reproducible (ICC=0.542-0.686). Age, gender, and body mass index influenced muscle thickness and echogenicity. Ultrasound changes in denervated muscles correlated with the severity of EMG abnormalities. A z-score cutoff of 0 identified denervated muscles with a sensitivity of 100% and 89% for echogenicity and muscle thickness, respectively. Conclusions: Hand muscle ultrasound provides a noninvasive method to quantify muscle denervation and may be useful as a screening tool before EMG studies.
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Nerve injury
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Physiology (medical)