Current PhD Students
Faculty Mentor: Shawn C. Roll PhD, OTR/L, RMSKS, FAOTA, FAIUM
Year of Entry: 2018
My research interest lies in the study of musculoskeletal disorders. Specifically, I am interested in exploring the pathology and treatment of upper extremities as well as the impact of musculoskeletal disorders on workers’ daily lives. As a research assistant, I am currently investigating the use of sonographic imaging to assess carpal tunnel syndrome within the dental hygiene profession. I am also conducting a meta-analysis that will identify reference values for the typical size of the median nerve in healthy subjects using musculoskeletal sonography.
Bachelor of Science (BS)
2017 | Peking University
Yao, B., Gan, K., Lee, A., & Roll, S. C. (2020). Comparing shape categorization to circularity measurement in the evaluation of median nerve compression using sonography. Journal of Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/8756479319898471 Show abstract
Purpose. This study aimed to develop a subjective categorization of nerve shape and to examine the relationship of shape categorizations to measurement of nerve circularity.
Methods. Wrists were evaluated with sonography in healthy participants. Images of the median nerve were obtained in the transverse plane at the level of pisiform with the fingers resting, gripping, and pinching. Nerves were categorized as ovoid, angular, or irregular, and the cross-sectional area and perimeter were measured to calculate nerve circularity.
Results. Across 167 participants, the median nerve shifted from being primarily ovoid at rest to angular shaped when the fingers were in a full fist or pinching. Approximately three-quarters of subjects exhibited a shape change during dynamic movement. Irregular nerves had the lowest circularity values; however, the majority of nerves had similar circularity measures despite having different shapes.
Conclusions. Subjective categorization of shape has the potential to be a valid technique for evaluation of the median nerve using sonography, and this evaluation may provide additional information regarding nerve compression that is not fully captured by a circularity measure. Further investigation is needed to determine how these two techniques may be best used individually or together to advance clinical diagnosis, prevention, and rehabilitative interventions.
Keywords. sonography, carpal tunnel syndrome, median nerve, circularity