This is a more sophisticated investigation of a limb or joint and provides me with vital information about the “soft tissues”. These include the muscles, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, as well as specialized structures like the meniscus in the knee and labrum in the hip. It takes up to 45 minutes and involves going into a circular machine. The scan is reported by a radiologist who is part of the team and discussed with me within hours of completion. It is often read in conjunction with the plain X-rays.
As these scans rely on magnetic fields you will be asked about metal objects within your body such as pacemakers or shrapnel, and metal work can cause artifact to affect the quality of the image. It is also helpful in identifying early change in conditions such as avascular necrosis or bone bruising.