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Ultrasound-guided injections Mansfield TX

Ultrasound is an imaging method that uses high-frequency sound waves to produce real-time images of the internal body. 

An ultrasound-guided injection is an interventional procedure which involves injecting steroids or anesthetic into specific areas in the body with the aid of ultrasound. 

The physician performing an ultrasound-guided injection is able to see the direction of the needle inside the body with the help of an ultrasound device.

The ultrasound device, such as a transducer sends real-time images to a monitor or screen where the doctor views the images and the direction of the needle inside the body.

Ultrasound-guided injections are used to relieve pains, identify injuries and abnormalities in tendons, muscles, nerves, etc. 

It can be used for both diagnostic and therapeutic treatments. People with rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, muscle tears, ligament tears, and tendinopathies can use ultrasound-guided injections to alleviate pains and inflammations.

Types of ultrasound-guided injections

There are several types of ultrasound-guided injections. Ultrasound-guided injections are used to alleviate pains in several medical conditions.

Below are some examples of ultrasound-guided injections:

  • Neurolysis
  • Cortisone injections into joints and soft tissues
  • Hydrodilatation
  • Arthrograms
  • Synvisc or durolane injection
  • Intra-articular facet injections and medial branch nerve blocks

Preparing for an ultrasound-guided injection

When preparing for an ultrasound injection, you first need to consult with your doctor. Your doctor will review your medical history to ensure that you are an ideal candidate for the injection.

If you are on any blood-thinning medications, you may need to stop for several days before the injection is administered to you.

If you have any allergies or you have allergic reactions to the anesthetic or steroids that will be injected into your body, you need to inform your doctor.

If you have any medical conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure or high blood sugar, also inform your doctor.

When coming to the clinic for the injection, wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. Try as much as possible not to put on any jewelry because you may need to remove them before the treatment.

How is an ultrasound-guided injection done?

During an ultrasound injection procedure, you may be asked to sit down or lie down on an exam table in an ultrasound room or physician’s office.

You may be asked to remove your clothes from the area where the injection will be given.

When your physician has identified the injection area, a small amount of ultrasound gel will be applied to the skin over the affected area.

Your physician will then use a transducer or any ultrasound device to scan the affected area in order to view the exact spot for the injection.

Your skin will then be cleaned around the affected area. 

Your doctor will then inject a needle into your skin using the ultrasound as a guide. He or she will be watching the real-time image on a screen.

When your doctor has confirmed that the needle is in the right position, the medication which contains a local anesthetic and a corticosteroid will be injected into the area. 

The local anesthetic helps to numb the area to block the pain while the corticosteroid helps to reduce/prevent inflammation.

The anesthetic starts to take effect immediately and you may feel immediate pain relief. The corticosteroid normally starts to take effect after a few days or a week. 

When the anesthetic has worn off, you may begin to feel pain again before the corticosteroid starts to take effect.

After the medication has been injected, your doctor may use a small bandage to cover up the injection spot on your skin.

The entire procedure takes about 10-20 minutes to be completed.

What happens after the injection has been given?

After the injection has been given, you will be monitored for a few minutes to ensure that you feel pain relief and for any side effects that may occur.

You may feel weakness, numbness, or heaviness around the area where the injection was given.

You may be allowed to go home immediately. However, it is advisable to come along with someone that will drive you back home. This is because the anesthetic may make you feel dizzy or weak which may not allow you to drive well.

Do not engage in any strenuous activities in the first few days. Avoid lifting heavy objects or any strenuous physical exercises. 

Complications or side effects

An ultrasound- guided injection is a safe procedure. However, like every other medical procedure, there are possibilities of side effects or complications. 

The complications or side effects that may occur in an ultrasound-guided injection include:

  • Minor bruising at the injection site
  • Pain for some days after the anesthetic has worn off before the corticosteroid starts to take effect.
  • Infections
  • Allergic reactions
  • Bleeding
  • Muscle spasms
  • Local anesthetic toxicity 
  • Weakness or numbness at the injection area

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