Journal of Medical Ultrasonics

, Volume 42, Issue 3, pp 315–322 | Cite as

Estimation of in vivo cortical bone thickness using ultrasonic waves

  • Isao Mano
  • Kaoru Horii
  • Hiroshi Hagino
  • Takami Miki
  • Mami Matsukawa
  • Takahiko Otani
Original Article



To verify the measurement of cortical bone thickness at the distal radius in vivo using an ultrasonic method.


The method for estimating cortical bone thickness was derived from experiments with in vitro bovine specimens. Propagation time of echo waves and propagation time of slow waves were used for the estimation. The outside diameter of cortical bone and the cortical bone thickness at the distal 5.5 % site of radius were measured with the new ultrasonic bone measurement system, and the results were compared with X-ray pQCT clinical measurements.


There was a high positive correlation (r: 0.76) between the cortical bone thickness measured by the new ultrasonic system and the X-ray pQCT results.


We will be able to measure not only cancellous bone density but also cortical bone thickness in vivo using ultrasonic waves (without X-ray) safely and repeatedly.


Distal radius Cortical bone thickness Fast and slow waves pQCT 



Part of this work was supported by the Regional Innovation Strategy Support Program of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan, and a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (B) from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.

Conflict of interest

Kaoru Horii is an employee of Oyo Electric Co., Ltd. Takahiko Otani is an advisor of Oyo Electric Co., Ltd. Isao Mano, Hiroshi Hagino, Takami Miki, and Mami Matsukawa declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical standards

All procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1964 and later versions. Informed consent was obtained from all patients for being included in the study.


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Copyright information

© The Japan Society of Ultrasonics in Medicine 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Isao Mano
    • 1
  • Kaoru Horii
    • 2
  • Hiroshi Hagino
    • 3
  • Takami Miki
    • 4
  • Mami Matsukawa
    • 5
  • Takahiko Otani
    • 5
  1. 1.Office for Research Initiatives and DevelopmentDoshisha UniversityKyotanabeJapan
  2. 2.Oyo Electric Co., Ltd.JoyoJapan
  3. 3.Faculty of MedicineTottori UniversityYonagoJapan
  4. 4.Izumiotsu Municipal HospitalIzumiotsuJapan
  5. 5.Faculty of Science and EngineeringDoshisha UniversityKyotanabeJapan

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