The OMERACT Ultrasound Group: Status of current activities and research directions

Richard J. Wakefield*, Maria Antonietta D'Agostino, Anna Maria Iagnocco, Emilio Filippucci, Marina Backhaus, Alexander K. Scheel, Fredrick Joshua, Esperanza Naredo, Wolfgang A. Schmidt, Walter Grassi, Ingrid Moller, Carlos Pineda, Andrea Klauser, Marcin Szkudlarek, Lene Terslev, Peter Balint, George A W Bruyn, Wijnand A A Swen, Sandrine Jousse-Joulin, David KaneJuhani M. Koski, Philip O'Connor, Sanja Milutinovic, Philip G. Conaghan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

117 Citations (Scopus)


Ultrasound (US) is a relatively new imaging modality in rheumatology that offers great potential as a diagnostic and management tool. In 2004, an OMERACT Ultrasound Special Interest Group was formed to address the metric qualities of US as a potential outcome measure. A preliminary systematic review highlighted the deficiencies in the literature, particularly with regard to the reliability of interpreting and acquiring images; as a consequence, a number of exercises were proposed to address these issues. This report describes a series of iterative studies that have resulted in improved intra- and inter-reader reliability for detecting and scoring synovitis from both static and real-time images of the hand joints of patients with rheumatoid arthritis. The reliability of acquiring images was also enhanced using standardized positions. Future studies will assess the value of US in clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)848-851
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Rheumatology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Inflammatory arthritis
  • Reliability
  • Ultrasonography
  • Validity


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