Microstructural characterization of annulus fibrosus by ultrasonography: a feasibility study with an in vivo and in vitro approach
TypeArticles dans des revues avec comité de lecture
The main function of the intervertebral disc is biomechanical function, since it must resist repetitive high loadings, while giving the spine its flexibility and protecting the spinal cord from over-straining. It partially owes its mechanical characteristics to the lamellar architecture of its outer layer, the annulus fibrosus. Today, no non-invasive means exist to characterize annulus lamellar structure in vivo. The aim of this work was to test the feasibility of imaging annulus fibrosus microstructure in vivo with ultrasonography. Twenty-nine healthy adolescents were included. Ultrasonographies of L3–L4 disc were acquired with a frontal approach. Annulus fibrosus was segmented in the images to measure the thickness of the lamellae. To validate lamellar appearance in ultrasonographies, multimodality images of two cow tail discs were compared: ultrasonography, magnetic resonance and optical microscopy. In vivo average lamellar thickness was 229.7 ± 91.5 μm, and it correlated with patient body mass index and age. Lamellar appearance in the three imaging modalities in vitro was consistent. Lamellar measurement uncertainty was 7%, with good agreement between two operators. Feasibility of ultrasonography for the analysis of lumbar annulus fibrosus structure was confirmed. Further work should aim at validating measurement reliability, and to assess the relevance of the method to characterize annulus alterations, for instance in disc degeneration or scoliosis.
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LANGLAIS, Tristan; VERGARI, Claudio; PIETTON, Raphaël; DUBOUSSET, Jean; SKALLI, Wafa; VIALLE, Raphaël (2018)Objectives In vitro studies showed that annulus fibrosus lose its integrity in idiopathic scoliosis. Shear wave ultrasound elastography can be used for noninvasive measurement of shear wave speed (SWS) in vivo in the annulus ...
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