A national leader in MSK ultrasound
This leading-edge tool is used to visualize musculoskeletal injuries and disorders.
Ultrasound, an imaging technology long used for evaluating pregnancies, is also highly effective for imaging joints, muscles, nerves, and ligaments. Known as a musculoskeletal (MSK) ultrasound, this special application of high-frequency sound waves can assist in diagnosing and managing conditions such as arthritis, tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome.
MSK Ultrasound Advantages
Ultrasound offers several advantages over other imaging technologies:
- Ultrasound does not expose patients to radiation.
- Ultrasound scanning gives a clear picture of soft tissues that do not show up well on X-ray images.
- Ultrasound provides real-time imaging, making it a good tool for guiding minimally invasive procedures, such as needle biopsies.
- Unlike MRIs, ultrasound is not affected by pacemakers or metal fragments in the body.
- For claustrophobic patients, ultrasound is a more comfortable alternative to an MRI.
- Ultrasound produces a dynamic image, so doctors can see joints and tendons in motion.
Ultrasound does has some disadvantages. Compared to MRIs, an MSK ultrasound offers a limited field of vision. And while the MSK ultrasound typically costs less than a CT or MRI, it is more expensive than a simple X-ray.
MSK Ultrasound for Guided Injections
Our pain and rehab doctors can perform injections using the MSK ultrasound to visualize the injection site. The ultrasound is used to help guide injections into the precise area of injury or pain. This increases the effectiveness of the injection and makes it safer by helping the injector avoid nearby nerves or blood vessels. The end result is less pain and improved function.
MSK Ultrasound at Aurora BayCare
MSK ultrasound is a relatively new imaging technology, at least in the U.S. At Aurora BayCare, our doctors were the first in Northeast Wisconsin (and among the first in the nation) to receive the Registered in Musculoskeletal (RMSK) sonography credential.