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Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology


Elsevier Inc.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


With lower-cost devices and technologic advancements, ultrasound has been undergoing a resurgence as a method to measure subcutaneous adipose tissue. We aimed to determine whether a low-cost, 2.5-MHz amplitude (A-mode) ultrasound, designed specifically for body composition assessment, could produce subcutaneous fat thickness measurements comparable to an expensive, 12-MHz brightness (B-mode) device. Fat thickness was measured on 40 participants (20 female, 20 male; 29.7 ± 11.1 y of age; body mass index 24.9 ± 4.5 kg/m2) at 7 sites (chest, subscapula, mid-axilla, triceps, abdomen, suprailiac and thigh) with both devices. Intraclass correlations exceeded 0.75 at all measurement sites. Mean differences in fat thickness were not significantly different (p > 0.05) and within ± 1.0 mm. Variability between devices was greatest at the abdomen, the site with the greatest thickness. The low-cost, low-resolution A-mode ultrasound provides subcutaneous fat thickness measurements similar to the more expensive, high-resolution B-mode ultrasound.

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