What is musculoskeletal ultrasound?
For musculoskeletal pain (knees, ankles, shoulders, wrists, etc.), healing starts with appropriate diagnosis! Musculoskeletal ultrasound is a non-invasive, radiation-free radiological examination used to generate images for diagnosis. Linked to a powerful computer, a probe produces images of the human body’s anatomical structures. It is among the best examinations to diagnose certain musculoskeletal disorders affecting tendons, muscles, ligaments, bursae, fascias and nerves. This examination helps individuals afflicted by pain or joint limitations and for which X-ray examinations are non-specific.
Musculoskeletal ultrasound is an accurate and dynamic examination, during which several musculoskeletal structures likely to be the source of a patient’s pain are examined. The ultrasound does not involve any X-rays; instead, ultrasounds are emitted by a probe in the form of short impulses. They help in making or confirming a diagnosis and, more precisely, identifying the type and extent of a lesion. When required, high-precision injections can also be performed during such examination by directly observing the lesion and the injection needle used to inject medication right where the problem is located.
This type of apparatus and examination has been used for many years to view fetuses in pregnant women. But it has also served to analyze and diagnose various musculoskeletal injuries and lesions. This examination is recommended for any individual suffering from pain or joint limitations.
Clinique de physiatrie et de médecine du sport de Montréal has physicians specialized in musculoskeletal ultrasound available to assess pain, find its source and propose effective treatment for relief.
The ultrasound device allows a physiatrist to view most musculoskeletal structures located outside or around a joint, such as tendons, bursae, ligaments, muscles, fascias and peripheral nerves. Ultrasound guidance examination is excellent to diagnose tendinous problems (tendinopathy or tear), ligament or muscle lesions, bursitis, fasciitis and peripheral nerve lesions.
Although not necessarily the best examination to diagnose a joint problem, musculoskeletal ultrasound enhances indirect signs (irregularity of bone surfaces, fluid in joints, swelling of joint membranes), that may point to a suspected joint damage.
The ultrasound device is a diagnostic tool that also allows performing high-precision injections of various medications or products (cortisone, hyaluronic acid for visco-supplementation, Botox, anesthetics, platelet-rich plasma, etc.) during an ultrasound guidance procedure. The device displays, in real time, the positioning of a needle inserted into an affected anatomical structure and the injection of medication into a desired site.