Need to Know
- If you take blood thinners, such as Coumadin, or other medications, your doctor may instruct you to stop taking your medication for a period of time before the procedure
- Inform your physician if you are pregnant
- Inform your physician if you have allergies to contrast material and/or lidocaine
Nice to Know
- You will be awake during the procedure and can go home afterward
- You will have a small band-aid on the area injected
Why is This Exam Done?
Arthrograms can be diagnostic or therapeutic. Therapeutic arthrograms often distend the joint with cortisone and lidocaine, with a common site being the shoulder. Diagnostic arthrograms can be helpful in determining the cause of pain using CT or MRI guidance.
What Happens During My Procedure?
Depending on the area to be injected, you will be positioned on your back or stomach on an x-ray table. The fluoroscopy camera will be positioned above you. The area to be injected will be cleansed with an antiseptic solution such as betadine.
A small needle will be placed under the skin and an anesthetic, such as lidocaine, will be injected to numb the area. A needle will then be placed into the joint, and contrast material will be injected to confirm that the needle is in the correct location. An anesthetic will also be injected, deeper into the joint, along with saline and more contrast material, depending on the specific procedure ordered by your healthcare provider.
In most cases, a CT or MR scan will be performed after the arthrogram to obtain more information about the structure of the joint. This will take another 30-45 minutes.
What Happens After My Procedure?
A summary of the procedure will be sent to your healthcare provider who will then contact you to discuss the results.
Unless directed otherwise, you may resume your normal diet and prescribed medications. To avoid any potential infection, please refrain from submerging the area in a tub or pool for 24 hours. You may shower. Rest for the remainder of the day and avoid heavy lifting and strenuous activities.
You may feel soreness at the needle insertion site for several days. You can use an ice pack for up to 15 minutes per hour to relieve any discomfort.
How Should I Prepare?
Depending on the joint to be injected, you may be asked to discontinue your blood thinner prior to the exam. This will be by the direction of your healthcare provider. Please inform us at the time of scheduling if you do indeed take a blood thinner.
- If you have an active infection and are taking antibiotics, the medication course must be complete prior to the procedure.
- Inform us if you are or may be pregnant, or have allergies to medications or x-ray dye (contrast).
What Should I Bring?
On the day of your procedure you should:
- Avoid bringing valuables or jewelry
- Wear loose, comfortable clothing
- Wear comfortable shoes
- Bring your insurance card and a valid photo ID.
Avon100 Simsbury Road, Suite 101
Avon, CT 06001
Monday - Friday | 8:00am - 4:30pm
Weeknight and weekend appointments available for MRI
Hours Vary by Exam
Glastonbury704 Hebron Avenue, Suite 100 (Access to building off Oakwood Drive)
Glastonbury, CT 06033
Monday - Friday | 7:00am - 5:00pm
Saturday | 7:00am - 3:30pm
Weeknight appointments available for Mammography and MRI
Hours vary by examMore Information