What are some benefits of ultrasound for musculoskeletal applications?
There are multiple benefits and unique advantages that US offers in musculoskeletal imaging. US does not involve the use of ionizing radiation, which is especially attractive when imaging pediatric and pregnant patients, and there are no absolute contraindications to diagnostic US. In addition, US has a higher spatial tissue resolution than magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT), and it allows for real-time dynamic examination of anatomic sites with suspected abnormality. US can effectively be used to image patients with surgical hardware that leads to artifacts on CT and MRI, and Doppler US can provide important physiologic information about tissue blood flow. In particular, US is useful to distinguish whether a lesion is cystic or solid and to guide biopsies and therapeutic injections.