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Orthopedics. 2008 Apr;31(4):370.

Estimating the elbow carrying angle with an electrogoniometer: acquisition of data and reliability of measurements.

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  • 1Laboratorio di Biomeccanica, Istituti Ortopedici Rizzoli, Bologna, Italy.


In clinical practice, the carrying angle of the elbow is assessed by radiographs or goniometers to evaluate the reduction of distal humerus or radial head fractures and epicondylar pathology. This study evaluated a noninvasive technique for estimating the carrying angle in full extension using a 3-dimensional digitizer. Data acquisition was performed on 37 healthy adults. Mean carrying angle was 12.7 degrees +/-3.8 degrees. No side or gender differences were observed (P>.05). Interoperator repeatability was good (interclass correlation coefficient, 0.7), and intraoperator repeatability was excellent (interclass correlation coefficient, 0.85).The major advantage of this technique is the possibility of being adapted to commercial digitizers and being used in new computer technologies for better qualifying anatomic and functional features of the elbow joint.

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