Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Radiography: arthrography

Contributor(s): Tobias Schwartz

Introduction

  • Arthrography is a radiographic study of a synovial joint where iodine-based contrast medium is injected into the joint space.

Uses

Indications and contraindications for contrast arthrography

  • The only synovial joint where a contrast arthrography is relevant in the dog is the shoulder joint. The following discussion will focus on shoulder arthrography.
  • Relative indications:
    • Shoulder OCD Shoulder: osteochondrosis - arthrogram : investigate presence of attached OCD flap.
    • Suspected bicipital tenosynovitis and/or avulsion Rupture / avulsion of the biceps brachii tendon .
    • Suspected biceps tendon luxation or rupture Shoulder: chronic biceps tendon avulsion - arthrogram.
    • Joint capsule integrity in shoulder trauma.
    • Assessment of joint neoplasia and cartilage erosion.
  • There is no absolute indication for shoulder arthrography in the dog.
  • Contraindications for shoulder arthrography include known iodine allergies or increased risks associated with needle insertion (bleeding disorder, tumor seeding).

Advantages

  • The main advantage is the visualization of articular cartilage and intra-articular tendons/ligaments which cannot be differentiated on survey radiographs.
  • Negative contrast medium (gas) is not commonly used but can occur naturally with extensive distraction (cavitation) or post-operatively.

Requirements

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Preparation

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Procedure

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Aftercare

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Clements D N, Kelly D F, Philbey A W et al (2005) Arthrographic diagnosis of shoulder joint masses in two dogs. Vet Rec 156 (8), 254-255 PubMed.
  • van Bree H & van Ryssen B (1995) Positive contrast shoulder arthrography with iopromide and diatrizoate in dogs with osteochondrosis. Vet Rad & Ultrasound 36 (3), 203-206 VetMedResource.
  • Barthez P Y & Morgan J P (1993) Bicipital tenosynovitis in the dog - evaluation with positive contrast arthrography. Vet Rad & Ultrasound 34 (5), 325-330 VetMedResource.


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