Introduction: Rotator cuff (RC) tears result in muscle atrophy and fat infiltration within the RC muscles. An estimation of muscle quality and deformation, or extensibility, is useful in selecting the most appropriate surgical procedure. We determined if noninvasive quantitative assessment of intramuscular fat using MRI could be used to predict extensibility of the supraspinatus muscle. Methods: Seventeen cadaveric shoulders were imaged to assess intramuscular fat infiltration. Extensibility and histological evaluations were then performed. Results: Quantitative fat infiltration positively correlated with histological findings and presented a positive correlation with muscle extensibility (r = 0.69; P = 0.002). Extensibility was not significantly different between shoulders graded with a higher fat content versus those with low fat when implementing qualitative methods. Discussion: A noninvasive prediction of whole-muscle extensibility may directly guide pre-operative planning to determine if the torn edge could efficiently cover the original footprint while aiding in postoperative evaluation of RC repair. Muscle Nerve 57: 129–135, 2018.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Physiology (medical)