Spot Hidden Issues With Diagnostic Ultrasound
Nothing is more frustrating than a vague, hard to define pain that simply will not go away. You will need to be patient and work your way through many different testing procedures to find the true cause of your fatigue, back pain, or numbness & tingling. Texas Spine and Sports Therapy Center offers numerous ways to hunt down the condition or disease that is behind the symptoms that bother you every day. One affordable and helpful option is the diagnostic ultrasound. This technique may reveal damage or inflammation that can not be captured on x-ray or discovered with a physical examination.
How Is A Diagnostic Ultrasound Different From Other Types of Testing?
When an ultrasound machine is used to image the spine or nerve centers, it is possible to see inflammation and damage to the softer tissues and cartilage. This is why ultrasounds are used to check up on the development of a fetus when a woman is pregnant. This type of imaging can be very useful when the spine appears to be in good alignment and shows no fractures or slipped vertebrae. Texas Spine and Sports Therapy Center combines this type of testing with other diagnostics to get a broad view of your spinal and nerve health as a whole.
The Benefits Of A Diagnostic Ultrasound?
As a patient, you have a choice about which testing and treatment options you choose. Ultrasounds may be the best option if you need benefits like:
- No recovery time – the ultrasound is non-invasive and leaves no permanent marks.
- No radiation – patients who can not handle x-rays may still rely on diagnostic ultrasound.
- No magnets – it is safe for patients with pacemakers and other devices.
- It is painless and requires no major preparations like fasting or anesthesia.
Where Can Ultrasound Be Used?
Some forms of testing only work on the limbs, while others provide limited information about the entire system. Diagnostic ultrasound allows our technicians to pinpoint issues in nearly any part of the body. We can use the tool to detect damage or inflammation in:
- Ankles and feet – detecting sprains and strains, spotting arthritis, swollen tissue, scar tissue on ligaments and tendons.
- Knees – runner’s injuries, loose ligaments due to use, injuries to the bones.
- Hips – tendon damage, cysts on the nerve bundles, entrapped nerves, and arthritis inflammation.
- Elbows – injuries due to repetition, loose or torn tendons, swelling or scars in the muscle tissue.
- Spinal column – the entire back can be scanned with a few appointments.
When Is Ultrasound Recommended?
In many cases, we can determine simple issues and resolve them without in-depth diagnostics. However, testing is important when trying to rule out serious spinal compressions or hereditary problems like rheumatoid arthritis. Patients who are dealing with illusive diseases or disorders may find diagnostic ultrasound one of their last options when other tests have turned up nothing. If immediate answers are needed due to swelling or a loss of range of motion, a quick test can reveal the problem and the cause at the same time.
Using Ultrasound For Followup
After we finish a complete treatment plan on our Austin patients, we use imaging techniques to show the changes in the spine. Our patients can feel the difference, but it is always good to check with tools like the diagnostic ultrasound. We can see if the visual markers of pain and damage have been resolved and healed by the treatments. A reduction in pain is often accompanied by an obvious change on the screen.
Preparing For Your Diagnostic Ultrasounds
Special preparations for an imaging procedure with ultrasound devices are only required for organ examinations. There’s no need to skip meals or change your medications before having your spine, shoulder, or hip examined. A slippery gel is applied to buffer the device, but there’s no pain, and no need to take the rest of the day off.
If you want to know what’s happening inside a painful limb or a numb extremity, an ultrasound might be the best option. You can discuss all of the diagnostic techniques we use to diagnose and treatment issues like sciatica with one of our professional team members at Texas Spine and Sports Therapy Center to get personalized advice.