The heel bone is often chosen for ultrasound assessment of bone. Ultrasound velocity generally serves as a diagnostic index and
varies with the temperature of the medium. While commercial quantitative ultrasound systems assume that the temperature of
the heel is stable, heel bone temperature is influenced more by ambient temperature than by body temperature, especially in the
winter. The effect of heel temperature has received more attention as quantitative ultrasound measurement systems have gained
wider use. Although the effect of heel temperature has been reported, few studies show a correlation between ultrasound parameters
and measured temperature and the temperature characteristics of soft tissue and the like. We determined the temperature
characteristics of cortical bone, trabecular bone, bone marrow, superficial skin, muscle, fat, and subcutaneous fat, major
components of the heel by using the bovine extirpated samples. While temperature coefficients of muscle and superficial skin
were low, those of bone marrow and fat were high. The temperature coefficients of cortical bone and bone marrow were the
same, although the temperature coefficient of trabecular bone was half that of cortical bone. We then estimated temperature
characteristics and calculated ultrasound velocity in the heel using thickness and the temperature coefficient of each heel component.
The estimated temperature characteristics were consistent with those actually observed in 21 women volunteers.