Very low prevalence of ultrasound-detected tenosynovial abnormalities in healthy subjects throughout the age range: OMERACT ultrasound minimal disease study

Jeanette Trickey, Ilfita Sahbudin, Mads Ammitzbøll-Danielsen, Irene Azzolin, Carina Borst, Alessandra Bortoluzzi, George Aw Bruyn, Philippe Carron, Coziana Ciurtin, Georgios Filippou, Jacek Fliciński, Daniela Fodor, Hélène Gouze, Marwin Gutierrez, Hilde Berner Hammer, Ellen Margrethe Hauge, Annamaria Iagnocco, Kei Ikeda, Rositsa Karalilova, Helen Isobel KeenMarion Kortekaas, Giuliana La Paglia, Gustavo Leon, Peter Mandl, Mihaela Maruseac, Marcin Milchert, Mohamed Atia Mortada, Esperanza Naredo, Sarah Ohrndorf, Carlos Pineda, Mads Nyhuus Bendix Rasch, Cristina Reátegui-Sokolova, Garifallia Sakellariou, Teodora Serban, Cesar A. Sifuentes-Cantú, Maria S. Stoenoiu, Takeshi Suzuki, Lene Terslev, Ilaria Tinazzi, Florentin Ananu Vreju, Ruth Wittoek, Maria Antonietta D'Agostino, Andrew Filer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to determine the prevalence of ultrasound-detected tendon abnormalities in healthy subjects (HS) across the age range. METHODS: Adult HS (age 18-80 years) were recruited in 23 international Outcome Measures in Rheumatology ultrasound centres and were clinically assessed to exclude inflammatory diseases or overt osteoarthritis before undergoing a bilateral ultrasound examination of digit flexors (DFs) 1-5 and extensor carpi ulnaris (ECU) tendons to detect the presence of tenosynovial hypertrophy (TSH), tenosynovial power Doppler (TPD) and tenosynovial effusion (TEF), usually considered ultrasound signs of inflammatory diseases. A comparison cohort of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) was taken from the Birmingham Early Arthritis early arthritis inception cohort. RESULTS: 939 HS and 144 patients with RA were included. The majority of HS (85%) had grade 0 for TSH, TPD and TEF in all DF and ECU tendons examined. There was a statistically significant difference in the proportion of TSH and TPD involvement between HS and subjects with RA (HS vs RA p<0.001). In HS, there was no difference in the presence of ultrasound abnormalities between age groups. CONCLUSIONS: Ultrasound-detected TSH and TPD abnormalities are rare in HS and can be regarded as markers of active inflammatory disease, especially in newly presenting RA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-236
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of the Rheumatic Diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2022


  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • tendinopathy
  • ultrasonography
  • Tenosynovitis/diagnostic imaging
  • Prevalence
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Male
  • Tendons/diagnostic imaging
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Hypertrophy/diagnostic imaging
  • Young Adult
  • Adolescent
  • Ultrasonography
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Aged
  • Cohort Studies


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