Sonoelastographic Assessment of the Achilles Tendon in Familial Mediterranean Fever Patients: Comparison With Healthy Subjects
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Introduction and objective: This study aims at using sonoelastography as a novel technique to evaluate the stiffness and thickness of Achilles tendons in familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) patients. Methods: Achilles tendons of 26 FMF patients and 23 control subjects were assessed with ultrasound and real-Lime sonoelastography. The Achilles tendons were divided into the distal, middle, and proximal thirds for elastographic image evaluation. Tendons were classified into three main types according to their elasticity features: grade 1 blue (hardest tissue) to green (hard tissue); grade 2, yellow (soft tissue); and grade 3, red (softest tissue). Tendons of the groups were compared in terms of thickness and stiffness. Results: There were no significant differences in thickness and stiffness of the Achilles tendon between FMF patients and controls (p>0.05). Sonoelastography of Achilles tendons of FMF patients displayed no relationship between FMF and tendinopathy. Conclusion: This issue should be explored in prospective studies in larger groups.