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At Midstate Radiology Associates, we have a team of board-certified radiologists who specialize in Musculoskeletal and Orthopedic Imaging. We diagnose athletes and non-athletes for common injuries, including ligament or tendon tears and bone fractures. To detect disease, one of our imaging procedures is called Direct Arthrography.

What is Direct Arthrography?

Direct Arthrography is an imaging procedure of your labrum, ligaments, tendons or cartilage to determine the cause of joint pain. A contrast material is injected directly into the patient’s body to distend the joint. This improves the detection of injury of certain structures such as the labrum, ligaments, tendons or cartilage, which may otherwise be invisible. Injection of the contrast material can be guided by x-ray, ultrasound or computed tomography. The method of injection depends on the anatomy and safest approach tailored to each patient individually.

Who Should Have This Procedure?

Direct Arthrography provides a detailed image of the body’s tissues and bones to identify diseases of the joint. Whether you’re an athlete who experienced an injury or a non-athlete with unexplained joint pain, Direct Arthrography can determine if surgery or joint replacement is needed. The procedure can identify defects within the:

  • Ankle
  • Elbow
  • Hip
  • Knee
  • Shoulder
  • Wrist

What You Can Expect

Although this procedure does not require special preparation, patients should tell their radiologist if they have a kidney condition or any allergies to medication. Certain implants may also prohibit patients from receiving an MRI exam, including cochlear ear implants, pacemakers, or spine or brain stimulators.

This outpatient procedure is minimally invasive and fast. After x-rays of the joint are taken, the skin around will be cleansed, and an anesthetic provided. Next, a second needle will be inserted and guided to the correct position before the contrast material is injected. You can expect to be done in 15 minutes.

Does Direct Arthrography sound like the right procedure for your joint condition? Contact us to make an appointment today!