Although X-ray imaging is useful for evaluating conditions of bones and joints, they are not as useful for evaluation soft tissue problems. MRIs are useful for soft tissue evaluation, but require referral to imaging facilities and can be expensive. A useful alternative to MRI for many conditions is diagnostic ultrasound. This is a quick and simple procedure that is done right in the office. Diagnostic ultrasound is offered as a service at all of our locations. The procedure is safe, quick, painless, is noninvasive, and utilizes no radiation. It is inexpensive and is covered by most insurance plans.
Diagnostic ultrasound involves the transmission of sound waves through the skin to image various tissues. These sound waves bounce off the deeper tissues, forming an image that can be studied. Many conditions can be diagnosed and/or evaluated with ultrasound, including tendinitis, arthritis, tumors, ganglia, nerve problems, plantar fasciitis, blood vessel problems, and wounds. Ultrasound is also very useful in the detection of foreign bodies that do not appear on X-ray.
In addition to the diagnostic use of ultrasound, the doctors of Melbourne Podiatry Associates also use ultrasound for what is known as “guided injections”. Placing an ultrasound probe over an area that is to be injected provides direct visualization of the area. This allows a more precise injection, permitting a maximum benefit with less discomfort and utilization of less medication. This technique is done in the office and is usually covered by insurance. It is particularly useful for joint injections, heel injections, and aspiration and/or injection of ganglia.
The doctors of Melbourne Podiatry Associates are all trained in the use of diagnostic ultrasound and ultrasound-guided injections. They would be happy to answer any questions regarding these techniques,