Background: Juvenile idiopathic inflammatory myopathy is a rare yet potentially debilitating condition. MRI is used both for diagnosis and to assess response to treatment. No study has evaluated the performance of US elastography in the diagnosis of this condition in children. Objective: To assess the performance of compression–strain US elastography in detecting active myositis in children with clinically confirmed juvenile idiopathic inflammatory myopathy and to compare its efficacy to MRI. Materials and methods: Children with juvenile idiopathic inflammatory myopathy underwent non-contrast MR imaging as well as compression–strain US elastography of the quadriceps muscles. Imaging findings from both modalities were compared to each other as well as to the clinical determination of active disease based on physical examination and laboratory data. Active myositis on MR was defined as increased muscle signal on T2-weighted images. Elastography images were defined as normal or abnormal based on a previously published numerical scale of muscle elastography in normal children. Muscle echogenicity was graded as normal or abnormal based on gray-scale sonographic images. Results: Twenty-one studies were conducted in 18 pediatric patients (15 female, 3 male; age range 3–19 years). Active myositis was present on MRI in ten cases. There was a significant association between abnormal MRI and clinically active disease (P = 0.012). US elastography was abnormal in 4 of 10 cases with abnormal MRI and in 4 of 11 cases with normal MRI. There was no association between abnormal elastography and either MRI (P > 0.999) or clinically active disease (P > 0.999). Muscle echogenicity was normal in 11 patients; all 11 had normal elastography. Of the ten patients with increased muscle echogenicity, eight had abnormal elastography. There was a significant association between muscle echogenicity and US elastography (P < 0.001). The positive and negative predictive values for elastography in the determination of active myositis were 75% and 31%, respectively, with a sensitivity of 40% and specificity of 67%. Conclusion: Compression–strain US elastography does not accurately detect active myositis in children with juvenile idiopathic inflammatory myopathy and cannot replace MRI as the imaging standard for detecting myositis in these children. The association between abnormal US elastography and increased muscle echogenicity suggests that elastography is capable of detecting muscle derangement in patients with myositis; however further studies are required to determine the clinical significance of these findings.
- Magnetic resonance imaging
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging