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Pain Management Services

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PatientsFairfax Radiological Consultants, P.C. (FRC) provides a broad range of musculoskeletal services including state-of-the-art imaging, diagnostic and therapeutic injections, and image-guided interventional procedures. These services are ordered by your neurosurgeon, orthopedic surgeon, or primary care physician for the diagnosis and/or therapeutic treatment of all pain in the area of the spine, as well as the joints. Many of these exams are used in conjunction with each other, particularly CT and MR, enabling accurate and safe procedures while minimizing patient discomfort.

  • Imaging Services
    • MR & CT Arthrography
    • Joint CT with w / 2-D & 3-D Reconstructed Imaging
  • Diagnostic and Therapeutic Injections
    • Epidural steroids injection
    • Facet blocks/Nerve root blocks
    • Sacroiliac joint injection
    • Hip and shoulder joint injections
  • Image-Guided Interventional Procedures
    • Vertebroplasty
    • Spine biopsies and Intervertebral disk biopsies
    • Bone biopsies

Imaging Services

What is MR & CT Arthrography?
Shoulder MRI\Arthrography is a diagnostic study of the joint structures that allows the radiologist to determine the stability and integrity of the joint as well as evaluate for cartilage tears and other injuries. MR arthrography (CT arthrography in patients who are not candidates for an MRI) is an advanced imaging technique designed to more completely diagnose problems with the joint. These exams use diagnostic injections, which enhance the visualization of the component structures of a joint. The precise evaluation possible with MR and CT imaging enables accurate and safe diagnosis to assist the surgeon while minimizing patient discomfort.

What is Joint CT with 2-D and 3-D Reconstructed Imaging?
Often CT scans help diagnose and evaluate complex fractures or fractures that are difficult to detect with standard x-ray images.

Diagnostic and Therapeutic Injections

What are facet block diagnostic and therapeutic facet injections?
These injections can provide valuable data that evaluate and pinpoint the source(s) of pain within the joints and/or nerves that run along the outer edge of the facet joints through the spine. The injections consist of anti-inflammatory steroid medication and/or anesthetic (numbing medication) that may reduce inflammation, resulting in pain relief. In some cases it provides the valuable data necessary to determine the next appropriate treatment option such as physical therapy or image-guided interventional procedures.

What are CT-guided nerve blocks or epidural steroid injections?
These injections can result in pain relief by injecting the medication adjacent to a specific nerve root in the spinal area. These injections may be ordered by your physician to treat appropriate types of nerve impingement or they may be helpful in precisely locating the nerve that may be causing your symptoms. If there are several areas of pain that exist within the facets or nerves, more injections may be necessary to pinpoint the source of pain in each location. Nerve root blocks are performed utilizing CT or fluoroscopy guidance.

What is a sacroiliac joint injection?
It evaluates and treats pain in the sacroiliac joints where the pelvis meets the spine.

What are hip and shoulder injections?
They can also be prescribed for pain relief in those areas.

Image-Guided Interventional Procedures

Radiologist with glassesWhat is Vertebroplasty?
This procedure is a minimally invasive treatment for those who have unresolved chronic pain due to vertebral fractures associated with osteoporosis. In the procedure, a needle is inserted through the skin and into the fractured vertebrae. Special bone cement used for medical purposes is injected into the bone to stabilize it. Because the radiologist is able to guide the needle to the area using special x-ray equipment, surgery is not required. These procedures are performed in a hospital environment, rather than in FRCís outpatient care centers.

What are Spine and Intervertebral Disk Biopsies?
When a lesion is detected on an imaging study and is not palpable, imaging guidance is often necessary for biopsy. CT, Ultrasound, and/or fluoroscopy can be used to guide a needle to the correct place and obtain a small piece of tissue at this location. For spine biopsies we often use fluoroscopy and for soft tissue lesions adjacent to the spine, face or skull base, we often use CT guidance. If there is a suspicion for tumor or infection of the vertebral bodies, a biopsy is often needed. For lesions more superficially in the soft tissues, ultrasound or CT may be the best option.

What are Bone Biopsies?
When an abnormality is detected in one of the bones, your physician may refer you for an image-guided biopsy. Most often an orthopedic surgeon specializing in bone tumors requests this examination. These procedures are usually performed after extensive imaging work-up. The actual procedure is done as an outpatient in the hospital with sedation.

To schedule an appointment please call (703) 752-7799.

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