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The Use of Ultrasound Technology for Assessing Fat and Muscle 

The Use of Ultrasound Technology for Assessing Fat and Muscle 

Ultrasound has been used for fat measurement since 19651. It is becoming one of the most promising methods for body fat layer measurement, especially for SAT (subcutaneous adipose tissue) measurement2. Muscle ultrasonography is simple, accessible, reliable, low-cost, and non-invasive technique that could be used to assess the muscle mass3.


UA=upperabdomen; LA=lowerabdomen; ES=erectorspinae; DT=distaltriceps; BR=brachioradialis; LT=lateralthigh; FT=frontthigh; MC=medialcalf.

Fig.1.B-Mode ultrasound measurement of uncompressed subcutaneous fat. ( a ) Sites for ultrasound measurement of sub-cutaneous adipose tissu ( SAT ) patterning: upper abdomen(1,UA), lower abdomen ( 2, LA ),erectorspinae( 3, ES ), distal triceps( 4, DT ), brachioradialis( 5, BR ), lateral thigh ( 6, LT ), front thigh ( 7, FT ) and medial calf ( 8, MC ).

Validation Papers

According to the World Health Organization (WHO 2015), more than 1.9 billion adults are overweight, and 600 million of them are obese. Obese has a close relationship with health and physical performance. Various measurement techniques for body fat assessment have been developed and applied, ultrasound technology is one of them and is now thought to be the most promising method. Here are some papers about fat and muscle assessment using ultrasound technology. You can browse and download it for free.


1, Booth RAD, Goddard BA, Paton A. Measurement of fat thickness in man: a comparison of ultrasound, Harpenden calipers and electrical conductivity. Br J Nutr. 1966;20:719–25.

2, Störchle P, Müller W, Sengeis M, et al. Standardized ultrasound measurement of subcutaneous fat patterning: high reliability and accuracy in groups ranging from lean to obese. Ultrasound Med Biol. 2017;43(2):427–38. 

3, Sánchez-Torralvo, F.J.;Porras, N.; Ruiz-García, I.;Maldonado-Araque, C.; García-Olivares, M.; Girón, M.V.;Gonzalo-Marín, M.; Olveira, C.; Olveira, G. Usefulness of Muscle Ultrasonography in the Nutritional Assessment of Adult Patients with Cystic Fibrosis. Nutrients 2022, 14, 3377.