Arthrography is an invaluable tool for diagnosing a wide variety of pathology in articular joints throughout the body. Charter Radiology offers both CT and MR Arthrography of the shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip and knee joints. We utilize state-of-the-art 3 Tesla MRI scanners to provide the most accurate image of the joints.  Studies have shown that MR arthrography performed on a  3 Tesla scanner to be superior for diagnosing labral tears.

Indications for Arthrography

• Suspected labral tears
• Capsular injuries
• Persistent pain in the absence of significant findings on conventional MRI
• Post-surgical pain
• Recurrent joint dislocations
• Femoroacetabular impingement (FAI)

Arthrography is one of Dr. Uppal’s specialties and she has the expertise that comes from doing this procedure for over 15 years. Charter Radiology performs arthrography for all articular joints, but most commonly in the shoulder or hip joint to evaluate the labrum.  In addition, Charter Radiology also performs steroid injections in the shoulder and hip joints, when indicated.

What to Expected During the Procedure

The skin around the area of interest will be cleansed with antiseptic solution then covered with a sterile drape. After the skin has been cleansed, a local anesthetic will be sprayed on the skin. Dr. Uppal will use a small needle to inject local anesthetic into the joint. The needle placement is confirmed by using a low dose fluoroscopic image. Once the placement is confirmed, the contrast solution will be injected directly into the joint. Following the injection, the area will be cleansed. The injection process will last for roughly 20 minutes.

Following the injection, an MRI or CT will be performed on the articular joint. The MRI procedure takes approximately 30 minutes, and a CT procedure takes about 15 minutes.

What to Expect After the Procedure

Patients may resume normal daily activities except for strenuous athletic activities, which should be avoided for 24 hours following the procedure. Athletes need to consult with their physician prior to resuming their sport. You may experience some pain or discomfort in the joint for 24 hours after the arthrogram. If needed, pain medication such as Advil, Tylenol or any NSAID may be taken to alleviate any discomfort.

The injection site should be kept clean and dry for a period of 24 hours.