A radiograph is an X-ray image obtained by placing a part of the patient in front of an X-ray detector and then illuminating it with a short X-ray pulse. Bones contain much calcium, which due to its relatively high atomic number absorbes x-rays efficiently. This reduces the amount of X-rays reaching the detector in the shadow of the bones, making them clearly visible on the radiograph. The lungs and trapped gas also show up clearly because of lower absorption compared to tissue, while differences between tissue types are harder to see.
Radiographs are useful in the detection of pathology of the skeletal system as well as for detecting some disease processes in soft tissue. Some notable examples are the very common chest X-ray, which can be used to identify lung diseases such as pneumonia, lung cancer or pulmonary edema, and the abdominal x-ray, which can detect bowel (or intestinal) obstruction, free air (from visceral perforations) and free fluid (in ascites). X-rays may also be used to detect pathology such as gallstones (which are rarely radiopaque) or kidney stones which are often (but not always) visible.
Is an ultrasound-based diagnostic imaging technique used for visualizing subcutaneous body structures including tendons, muscles, joints, vessels and internal organs for possible pathology or lesions.
In physics, the term “ultrasound” applies to all sound waves with a frequency above the audible range of normal human hearing, about 20 kHz. The frequencies used in diagnostic ultrasound are typically between 2 and 18 MHz
An ultrasound guided injection relieves sudden or ongoing pain and treats swelling. You will get an injection of local anaesthetic, a steroid or a mixture of both into the area that is bothering you. Ultrasound pictures are used to find the exact location for the injection.
The ultrasound helps the doctor locate where the needle should enter the skin. This spot will be cleaned and marked. The doctor may inject local anaesthetic to numb your skin. Next, the anaesthetic, steroid or a mixture of both will be injected. This may cause some mild pain.
Why do I need an ultrasound guided injection?
These injections may be used to:
- relieve pain from some medical conditions (arthritis, tendintis).
- remove fluid from an area near a joint or to stop the fluid from coming back.
- manage pain before surgery.
- manage pain if you are not medically able to have surgery
An Autologus Blood Injection is a recent medical procedure whereby a patient’s blood is injected into an area of the body for the purposes of healing. It is most commonly used to treat degeneration of tendons, which may occur in association with small tears. This disorder of tendons is frequently referred to as “tendinitis” by the public, however is known as tendinosis or tendinopathy in the medical profession.
The procedure is usually performed under ultrasound control by a radiologist. The injection of blood contains small cells called platelets, which contain platelet derived growth factor. This substance is thought to promote tendon healing. A variation on the technique is Platelet Rich Plasma(PRP), which is where the whole blood removed from the patient is spun in a centrifuge, separating the cells of the blood. As such a higher concentration of platelets is delivered into the tissue for healing. As yet, there has been no study to demonstrate that a PRP injection is superior to ABI, with both techniques demonstrating improvement in 70-80% of patients.
After the injection
- When planning your appointment, you will need to allow 7 – 10 days of ‘taking it easy’
- For shoulder injections, no heavy lifting, arm gym workouts or overhead movements for 7 days
- For arm and hand injections, no heavy lifting or difficult strenuous work with arms or sharp twisting type actions
- For lower limb (ankle, achillis, foot, knee, hip), no big (5-10km) walks or runs. No strenuous digging activity.
- For steroid injections, It may take a couple of days for the injection to begin to work
- There may be some pain post injection. For some patients, pain and aching post procedure may limit function for several days and in particular, Autologus Blood Injections (ABI) which may take up to 2 weeks
- The procedure will take 10 – 15 minutes
- It may be helpful to bring someone with you for your appointment but most patients are able to drive home
Please feel free to call us if you have any further questions regarding your procedure.