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Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Imaging

Musculoskeletal ultrasound is used by our sports medicine physicians to diagnose injuries and guide procedures. The safe, non-invasive imaging technique is many times used in place of a traditional MRI to help diagnose sprains, strains, tears and other soft tissue conditions in sports medicine and orthopedic patients.

What Is Musculoskeletal Ultrasound?

Musculoskeletal ultrasound is used on sports medicine and orthopedic patients to view the musculoskeletal system in a similar way that ultrasound technology is used with expectant mothers. This ultrasound imaging uses sound waves to produce pictures of tendons, muscles, joints and ligaments throughout the body.

Musculoskeletal ultrasound is growing in popularity because it's less expensive than an MRI. In addition, it can sometimes be used to view suspected stress fractures that are not visible with an MRI test.

Dr. David Harsha is board-certified in musculoskeletal ultrasound and has utilized the technology for over a decade. Watch the video to learn more from him about the ultrasonography tool.

How Is It Used in Sports Medicine?

At Hendricks Regional Health, our sports medicine team utilizes the imaging technique in various ways. The first is primarily for diagnostics, to help us see what is wrong with the tissue and better conclude the cause of pain or injury for conditions such as hematomas, Baker's cysts, Tennis elbow, Golfer's Elbow and much more. The second is to ensure greater accuracy when performing injections into a joint, muscle, or tendon. Ultrasound increases safety by visualizing vital structures such as nerves or blood vessels and avoiding them during the injection.

Because it is a portable machine, musculoskeletal ultrasound allows our physicians to go to where their patients are and use it not only in the office but also on the sidelines at sporting events. Our physicians utilize it frequently in the training room to diagnose problems that occur to bones, muscles and ligaments in student athletes who experience injuries out on the field.