By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
November 08, 2016
Category: Uncategorized
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At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we find that many times patients are uneasy when told they need to have an MRI or Computed tomography to help find the cause of foot pain. Sometimes the physical examination that our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah  conduct does not provide a comprehensive view of what’s going on with your foot or ankle. Fractures, joint issues, heel pain and other conditions may require advanced imaging studies to diagnose and evaluate. Here are some that are commonly used in our Edison, Monroe and Monmouth Junction offices:

X-rays—This is probably the best known and most familiar diagnostic imaging tool. X-rays use radiation to take a picture of the structures inside your foot and ankle. X-rays can show fractures, foreign objects (such as glass or metal), reveal whether a child’s bones are developing properly, how far arthritis has progressed or how a bone is healing. If you are pregnant, it’s important to let the podiatrist know. Women who are expecting should not have x-rays.

Computed tomography (CT)—Also known as a CAT scan, this test is a type of x-ray imaging that shows a cross sectional image of the foot or ankle, giving the podiatrist a 3D image. Although CAT scans can be used to view some of the same things as x-rays, they can more specifically pinpoint a suspected abnormality. This test should also not be done on pregnant women.

Ultrasound—Using sound waves to produce an image, ultrasound is a safe, painless way to diagnose a wide variety of ankle and foot problems and is particularly good for soft tissue evaluation. Some conditions that ultrasound can help evaluate include: bursitis, tarsal tunnel syndrome, Neuromas, heel spurs and injuries to tendons, ligaments or cartilage.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)—the device that is used to produce an MRI uses a large magnet and radio waves to produce 3D images of both soft tissues and bones. It is useful in assessing injuries, infections, tumors and arthritis. This test is time consuming—usually 60-90 minutes to do the whole foot—and people with implants such as pacemakers, artificial heart valves, inner ear implants, etc. may not be good candidates for this type of test.

It’s important to give the foot doctor a complete medical history in order to avoid having an imaging test that is inappropriate for you. If you have questions about a diagnostic or other procedure that the podiatrist has recommended, contact us at: 732-662-3050. We want our patients to feel comfortable and confident about all foot health procedures.