Musculoskeletal (MSK) imaging radiologists focus on diagnosing bone and joint abnormalities, including orthopedic, rheumatologic, and traumatic conditions. Through advanced imaging technologies, RPI MSK subspecialized radiologists are also able to study the anatomy and function of the soft tissue surrounding bones and joints, allowing them to directly observe these areas as the patient moves in a real-time. By specializing in musculoskeletal imaging, these physician experts are capable of focusing on additional nuances related to orthopedic and sports medicine injuries.
MSK imaging subspecialists work hand in hand on a daily basis with primary care physicians, surgeons, sports medicine and orthopedic specialists, and more. They utilize a variety of procedures depending on a patient’s needs including:
RPI has specialized physicians who read musculoskeletal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. MSK radiologists view MRI images of the knee, shoulder, spine, hips, ankle, wrists, and hands.
Computed tomography (CT) is the most common imaging service and is often used in MSK imaging to examine complex skeletal injuries, the internal structure of joints, as well as to guide certain types of therapeutic injections into joints, cysts, and tendons.
Ultrasound imaging uses sound waves to produce pictures of muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, and joints. In regard to MSK exams, ultrasound is utilized to diagnose sprains, strains, tears, arthritis, and other conditions, without radiation exposure.
MSK x-rays provide images of joints in order to diagnose deteriorating damage or injuries, providing an accurate image of bones and joints.
Fluoroscopy exams consist of a continuous x-ray that displays the movement of body parts and systems, and is used to diagnose diseases and injuries of the bones, muscles, and joints. A contrast agent is often injected into the body prior to the exam in order to better view the area in question.
A revolutionary advancement in radiology, three-dimensional (3D) imaging is utilized in several types of MSK exams, such as MRI and CT, to provide life-like images in order to assess anatomic structures and their relationships with one another. 3D imaging is of particular use in order to plan surgical procedures with more accuracy, allowing for shorter surgeries with less peripheral damage to healthy tissues.