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Multimodality evaluation of transfascial muscle and other soft tissue herniations of the extremities

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This review illustrates the multimodality assessment of transfascial muscle and other soft tissue herniations of the extremities. Transfascial herniations of the extremities can develop from congenital or acquired disruptions of the deep fascia, resulting in herniation of the underlying muscle, nerve, or soft tissue tumor into the subcutaneous tissues. While most patients present with a painless subcutaneous nodule that may change in size with muscle activation, some may experience focal or diffuse extremity symptoms such as pain and paresthesias. Although the diagnosis may be clinically suspected, radiologic evaluation is useful for definitive diagnosis and characterization. Ultrasound is the preferred modality for initial workup through a focused and dynamic examination. Magnetic resonance imaging can be utilized for equivocal, complicated, and preoperative cases. Computed tomography is less useful in the evaluation of transfascial herniations in the extremities due to similarities in the attenuation between muscle and fascia, which can decrease the conspicuity of small defects.

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The authors thank Sonia Watson, Ph.D. for assistance in preparation of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Francis I. Baffour.

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Pitot, M.A., Powell, G.M., Holcomb, R. et al. Multimodality evaluation of transfascial muscle and other soft tissue herniations of the extremities. Skeletal Radiol 52, 1–8 (2023).

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