At Riverside, we know you want a quick and reliable diagnosis. That's why our practices have onsite or nearby diagnostic and imaging centers. You may undergo one or more of the following tests as doctors assess your injury or the cause of your pain. Common types of diagnostic tests include:
X-Ray and Arthrography
An X-ray (radiograph) is a non-invasive medical test that involves exposing a part of the body to a small dose of radiation to produce pictures called x-rays of the inside of the body.
Arthrography is the examination of a joint using a special form of X-ray called fluoroscopy and a contrast material containing iodine. It makes it possible to see the internal joint structures and how they move during the test.
A CT scan, also called computerized tomography, is a type of X-ray exam that creates images of the inside of your body in cross section. The images are often compared to slices in a loaf of bread. The cross sectional scans show bones and soft tissue with greater clarity than regular x-rays. CT scans are used in examining injuries to the hands, feet and other skeletal structures because the final images will show the very small bones as well as surrounding tissues.
Most CT exams are painless, fast and easy. The CT scanner is a box-like machine with a short tunnel in the center and a narrow examination table that slides into and out of this tunnel. The scanners and detectors form a ring that will rotate around you. The technologist will operate the scanner and monitor your examination from a separate windowed room, but you'll be in two-way communication with the technologist the entire time. The scan takes anywhere from five to 30 minutes.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a non-invasive, painless medical test that produces detailed images of the inside of your body. MRI uses a high-powered magnet, radio waves and computers to generate detailed images of your internal structures including the spine, shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee, ankle, and foot.
The MRI is housed in a large cylinder-shaped tube surrounded by a circular magnet. You will lie on a moveable table that slides into the center of the magnet. Some MRI units are designed so that the magnet does not completely surround you while others are open on all sides.
The technologist will operate the MRI and monitor your examination from a separate windowed room, but you'll be in two-way communication the entire time.