Sonography of tendon pathology in the hand and wrist

Andrea B. Rosskopf, Carlo Martinoli, Luca M. Sconfienza, Salvatore Gitto, Mihra S. Taljanovic, Riccardo Picasso, Andrea Klauser

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Traumatic and non-traumatic tendon lesions are common at the wrist and hand. For the diagnosis, therapy management, and long-term prognosis of tendon lesions, a detailed under-standing of the complex anatomy and knowledge of typical injury patterns is crucial for both radiologists and clinicians. Improvements in high-resolution ultrasound are producing high-quality images of the superficial tendinous and peritendinous structures. Thus, ultrasound is a valuable first-choice tool for visualizing traumatic, inflammatory, and degenerative conditions of the extensor and flexor tendons, particularly with the advantage of possible dynamic examination. The additional use of duplex-Doppler and power Doppler ultrasound imaging is recommended for detection of tenosynovitis in overuse injury, inflammatory disease, infection, and after traumatic conditions. In traumatic tendon injuries, knowing the precise injury zone is important for treatment decision-making. In cases of tendon rupture, the radiologist should report the tear type (i.e., complete or partial-thickness) and assess the degree of tendon retraction and associated avulsion injury, including the degree of fragment displacement. The function of intact flexor tendons may be impaired by thickening, strain, or rupture of corresponding annular pulleys. This review describes in detail the typical ultrasound imaging features of common pathologies of hand and wrist tendons, including annular pulley lesions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e306-e317
JournalJournal of Ultrasonography
Issue number87
StatePublished - 2021


  • Hand
  • Pulley injury
  • Tendon injury
  • Tenosynovitis
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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