West Coast Radiology
Your health movement.
Musculoskeletal imaging addresses potential disorders of the bones, muscles, joints, back, spine and neck. It evaluates a wide variety of disorders, from torn tendons and arthritis to cancers and injury. West Coast Radiology includes some of the top musculoskeletal specialists in the country, who use some of the most advanced technologies available to accurately evaluate patient’s health.
What are my Musculoskeletal Imaging Options?
is an X-ray exam of a joint, using a contrast agent and fluoroscopy
(a live motion X-ray). The arthrogram may include additional CT
(for cross-sectional views) or MRI
(for magnetic resonance) imaging. Though the contrast material may vary, in all cases an arthrogram outlines the structures in the joint and reveals information to the radiologist.
A dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA
) scan measures the density and mineral content in bone, most often in the hip or lower spine. It is the most accurate method of determining bone density and potential problems related to bone loss. A DEXA bone density scan is recommended for those at risk of osteoporosis.
Vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty are procedures that treat spinal fractures or compressed / collapsed vertebrae, often performed by a neuroradiologist. Vertebroplasty is the injection of a cement-like material into the bone to make it more stable. In kyphoplasty, the doctor first creates space by inflating a balloon-like device in the bone. The space is then filled with the cement material.
Biopsies (removal of tissue for investigation) may be performed with the guidance of CT, MR, ultrasound or X-ray images. If a lesion is discovered, a bone biopsy is performed through the skin to determine whether cancer or infection is present.
Discography is a procedure used to confirm that an abnormal disc is the culprit of pain. It is often used prior to a more invasive surgical procedure, to gather more information before that next step is taken. A contrast agent is introduced, and after the procedure a CT scan identifies leakage from the discs to identify any spinal disc herniation.