Arthrograms have been commonly used to evaluate the shoulder, knee or wrist, but might also be used to evaluate the elbow or ankle.
Arthrography has been largely replaced by non-invasive and more accurate MRI joints/extremities.
An arthrogram examination involves the injection of contrast into a joint to improve soft tissue visualization on the images. Though reactions to the contrast material are uncommon, patients may experience a tingling sensation or pressure in the joint as the contrast is injected. The exam will require patients to assume different positions as the images are acquired.
Before the Procedure
No preparation is usually required for arthrogram examination.
After the Procedure
Patients may experience some swelling or discomfort after the test. Rest the joint for 12 hours. Apply ice to the joint for swelling and take a mild analgesic such as Tylenol, Motrin, Advil or Aleve for pain.