Sonographic evaluation of the plantar fascia in asymptomatic subjects

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Abstract

Purpose: To evaluate the appearance of the plantar fascia in asymptomatic subjects. Materials and methods: Thirty-one asymptomatic subjects were examined by 2 musculoskeletal radiologists. The plantar fascia was evaluated for thickness, echogenicity, vascularity on power Doppler, rupture, fluid adjacent to the fascia, and calcifications. Results: The study included 14 men and 17 women (age, 17-79 years; mean, 45 years). The mean thickness of the plantar fascia in men was 3.7 mm (range 2.5-7 mm), and in women 3.5 mm (range, 1.7-5.1 mm). The thickness was greater than 4 mm in 4 men (bilateral in 2). The mean thickness of fascias thicker than 4 mm in men was 5.4 mm (range, 4.3-7 mm). The thickness was greater than 4 mm in 5 women (bilateral in 4). The mean thickness of fascias thicker than 4 mm in women was 4.7 mm (range, 4.2-5.1 mm). There was no statistically significant difference between men and women and between both heels. Hypoechogenicity was observed in 3 men (bilateral in 2), and in 5 women (bilateral in 6). Hypervascularity, rupture, fluid adjacent to the fascia, and calcifications were not observed. Conclusion: A thickness greater than 4 mm and hypoechogenicity, are common in the plantar fascia of asymptomatic subjects. Findings that were not seen in asymptomatic subjects include a thickness greater than 7 mm, hypervascularity on power Doppler, rupture, fluid adjacent to the fascia, and calcifications.

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Gadalla, N., Kichouh, M., Boulet, C., Machiels, F., De Mey, J., & De Maeseneer, M. (2014). Sonographic evaluation of the plantar fascia in asymptomatic subjects. JBR-BTR, 97(5), 271–273. https://doi.org/10.5334/jbr-btr.1326

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