Shear Wave Elastography for Clinical Practice

Davis LC, Baumer TG, Bey MJ, Holsbeeck MV. Clinical utilization of shear wave elastography in the musculoskeletal system. Ultrasonography. 2019 Jan;38(1):2-12.


Shear wave elastography (SWE) is an emerging technology that provides information about the inherent elasticity of tissues by producing an acoustic radiofrequency force impulse, sometimes called an "acoustic wind," which generates transversely-oriented shear waves that propagate through the surrounding tissue and provide biomechanical information about tissue quality. Although SWE has the potential to revolutionize bone and joint imaging, its clinical application has been hindered by technical and artifactual challenges. Many of the stumbling blocks encountered during musculoskeletal SWE imaging are readily recognizable and can be overcome, but progressive advances in technology and a better understanding of image acquisition are required before SWE can reliably be used in musculoskeletal imaging.