Musculoskeletal Imaging

Musculoskeletal Radiology deals with the imaging of the body’s bones along with cartilage, connective tissue, joints, ligaments, muscles and tendons. This Division of the Department of Radiology, part of the University of Michigan Health System, provides the full range of imaging and image guided interventional procedures for the musculoskeletal system, which are read and interpreted by board-certified, fellowship-trained experts, who specialize in this type of radiology.

Our services include:

  • Digital radiography (filmless x-ray)
  • Fluoroscopy (continuous x-ray that shows movement of the body part)
  • Computed tomography (CT)
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) 
  • Sonography (uses sound waves to generate an image)
  • Ultrasound

We also provide the highest comprehensive evaluation of joints, often called for in high-caliber athletes, using:

  • Conventional arthrography (uses fluoroscopy plus contrast material to see anatomy and function of a joint)
  • CT arthrography (images internal structure of joints using contrast material)
  • MR arthrography (images tears, smaller joints, and other difficult viewing areas, using contrast material)

Our specialists perform joint, cyst and tendon sheath (membrane around a tendon) tissue biopsies, as well as diagnostic and therapeutic joint injections, using fluoroscopic, sonographic or CT guidance. We also provide image-guided needle biopsy of bones and soft tissues plus musculoskeletal lesions. We are one of the few centers that routinely performs skin radiofrequency ablation (heating and destroying cancer cells) of non-cancerous bone tumors as an alternative to more invasive surgery. We also provide consultation on bone examinations from outside the University of Michigan Health System.

In addition, our radiologists are highly accomplished in musculoskeletal sonography, performing diagnostic and interventional sonographic procedures of all joints. Soft tissue masses, cysts, and abscesses can also be detected and, when necessary, biopsied using sonographic guidance.

Our studies and protocols make sure our patients receive the lowest dose of radiation required for their study. And, having the very latest equipment allows for studies to be done quicker, which also lowers radiation exposure. We are also 100% digital, which means we are more efficient, can provide faster turnaround time getting reports back to physicians, and all medical personnel has access to the images.