X rays are the oldest and most frequently used form of medical imaging. Fluoroscopy uses x ray to obtain real-time images and make it possible to see bones, joints and organs in real time. The computer software available on our unit is constantly adjusting the needed radiation to keep the dose as low as possible. Images from the exam can be taken and saved into your imaging file. We record the total x ray dose in your record.
Fluoroscopy is used for:
- Therapeutic Hip injections
- Small joint injection
Arthrography is a radiology exam used to help diagnose joint conditions and unexplained pain. It is very good at evaluating joint problems involving tendons, ligaments or cartilage. This exam is sometimes combined with CT or MRI for more detailed evaluation.
If an arthrogram is recommended, contrast will be placed directly into the joint using fluoroscopy. The joint will be filled with contrast and lets the radiologist see the small internal structures. The exam typically does not require specific preparation. It is done while lying on a table. Your skin is cleaned with an antiseptic solution and a small needle used to numb the skin. You may feel a slight burning sensation. It is typical to feel pressure as the injection needle is advanced into the correct location by the radiologist. If you are having pain, inform the radiologist so more numbing can be given. The contrast is injected once the needle is in the correct location. You will feel fullness and pressure that should not be uncomfortable and may have a sensation of gurgling when the joint is moved. Following the injection, images are routinely obtained and saved into your record.
Fluoroscopy can also be used to inject anti inflammatory and anesthetic medications directly into a joint. This is used to help diagnose persistent or unexplained joint pain. The medications can temporarily decrease joint related pain or inflammation and gives your physician additional information about the source of your pain. You will be asked to keep a log of your discomfort over the next couple of weeks and to take this information back to your ordering doctor.
After the exam:
Vigorous activity is discouraged for 24 hours following a joint injection. Most patients experience no significant discomfort. You may apply ice to the area if it is bothersome or take an over the counter analgesic. All discomfort should resolve within 48 hours of the injection.
If you have continued problems or have additional concerns, you are encouraged to contact us or your physician.