Diagnostic ultrasound is a safe and painless way to image musculoskeletal and nerve related structures. Utilizing sound waves to produce high resolution images of these structures without exposing the patient to ionizing radiation, diagnostic ultrasound also allows for real time imaging so that dynamic testing of structures is possible i.e. imaging of the shoulder as it moves through its range of motion. The modality is excellent for guiding therapeutic procedures such as accurate needle placement for nerve block modalities. High resolution images of soft tissue (that are poorly imaged on conventional x rays) often exceed that of MRI and at a much lower cost.
Diagnostic musculoskeletal ultrasound uses include diagnosing: