If you have a knee injury that your doctor believes to be soft tissue-related, they will likely send you for an ultrasound of your knee. An ultrasound generates images that help your doctor pinpoint problems with your tendons, ligaments, and other soft joint structures. But if you've never had an ultrasound before, you may be a little apprehensive or unsure of what to expect. Here's a general overview of what will happen.
You'll change into an exam gown
There's not much prep required for an ultrasound. You should not have to restrict your diet in any way or take any specific medications prior to the scan. However, when you arrive at the ultrasound clinic, you'll generally be asked to change into an exam gown. You can generally leave your underwear on if preferred. Wearing the gown just makes it easier for the technician to see and work with your knee and the area around it.
A lubricant will be applied to your knee
Once the ultrasound technician is ready to begin, they will apply a sort of lubricant to your knee and the region around it. This lubricant will feel cold, but it should not cause any discomfort. It's simply to allow the ultrasound wand to slide more easily over your skin.
The image will be generated via an ultrasound wand
Your ultrasound tech will move the wand over your knee. They may change the angle of the wand a few times, pushing it into little nooks and crannies. In some cases, they may switch to a smaller wand partway through the scan, allowing them to get better images of the tighter spaces within the joint. As they move the wand, ultrasound images will be generated on a nearby screen. These images will be recorded so they can later be sent to your doctor.
You may get the results right then and there, or perhaps later
Sometimes, the ultrasound technician and their staff may give you a basic description of what they see in your knee. In other cases, they may not give you any info, and you may have to wait for an appointment with your doctor to get a diagnosis. In either case, if you have any knee problems like a torn meniscus, torn ACL, or swollen MCL, it should show up in the ultrasound.
Now you know what to expect when having an ultrasound performed on your knee. It's not that difficult of a procedure to make it through.
Reach out to an ultrasound service provider like Physiologix Health Services to learn more.