Artifacts in Musculoskeletal Ultrasonography: From Physics to Clinics

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Wu W., Chang K., Hsu Y., Hsu P., Ricci V., ÖZÇAKAR L.

DIAGNOSTICS, vol.10, no.9, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 10 Issue: 9
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/diagnostics10090645
  • Journal Name: DIAGNOSTICS
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Keywords: ultrasound, artifact, musculoskeletal, beam, attenuation, reflection, PERIPHERAL-NERVES, US, EXTREMITY
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Ultrasound appears to be the most useful imaging tool in the diagnosis and guided treatment of musculoskeletal disorders. However, ultrasonography has been criticized for being user dependent. Therefore, medical professionals should be familiar with the basic principles of ultrasound imaging (e.g., physics and technical skills) to diminish artifacts and avoid misinterpretation. In this review, we focused on the physics of common artifacts, their clinical significance, and the ways to tackle them in daily practice during musculoskeletal imaging. In particular, artifacts pertaining to the focal zone, beam attenuation, path and side lobe of the beam, speed of the sound, and range ambiguity were described.