What You Should Know About PCL Injuries

physical therapyThe PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) is one of the four main ligaments that make up the knee joint. This ligament is located in the middle of the knee, next to your ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), and prevents your shin bone from moving too far backward. PCL injuries are not as common as injuries to the ACL, but these injuries seriously affect the stability of your knee.

Causes – The PCL can become injured or torn when the tibia is hit while the leg is bent. This injury can happen while being tackled in football, falling on your shins, or any other impact to your shins. Your PCL can also tear due to a hyperextended knee.

Symptoms – Most ligament tears of any kind will result in swelling and pain in the area. For PCL tears, the swelling is typically in the back of the knee. You may also feel instability in the joint.

Diagnosis – PCL tears are classified in grades according to severity. At grade 1, the PCL is stretched, but not torn. At grade 2, you are looking at a partial tear. If you are diagnosed with a grade 3, the PCL is completely torn.  An MRI can be used to determine the severity of the tear. Surgery is only recommended for grade 3 injuries, as the PCL is difficult to reach when operating.

Middletown Medical Imaging’s open MRI machine can help your doctor determine the severity of your knee injury. Contact us today to schedule your appointment at our diagnostic imaging center in Middletown, NJ.

Exploring the Diagnostic Process for Endometriosis

doctor in exam roomEndometriosis is a painful condition characterized by the abnormal growth of uterine cells outside of the uterus. The symptoms include pelvic pain, painful bowel movements and urination, painful intercourse, and infertility. There are a variety of tests that a doctor will use to diagnose endometriosis.

Pelvic Exam – The first step to identifying endometriosis is to undergo a pelvic exam. Your doctor will feel for abnormalities in your pelvis, including cysts and scars. Unless a cyst has formed, it may be difficult to identify signs of endometriosis this way.

Ultrasound – An ultrasound uses sound waves to capture images inside of your body. To get the best image, your doctor may order both a traditional ultrasound and a transvaginal ultrasound. While this test cannot definitively diagnose endometriosis, it can reveal cysts that have formed as a result of the disease.

MRI – If you have cysts on your reproductive organs, an MRI can be used to help the surgeon locate them for removal. An open MRI uses magnetic fields to produce images of structures within your body, including your organs.

When you need an ultrasound, MRI, or other imaging test, visit Middletown Medical Imaging. We provide quality diagnostic imaging services in Middletown, NJ, and the surrounding area.

What You Need to Know About ACL Injuries

basketball players9If you play sports, you’ve probably heard about ACL tears. Your ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) is a strong band of tissue that connects your thigh bone to your shinbone. It helps to stabilize your knee joint. This is a common ligament to injure while playing a sport.

What Causes ACL Injuries?

Your ACL can become injured due to sudden stops, changes of direction, landing incorrectly after a jump, pivoting without moving your foot, or receiving a direct blow to your knee. It can also be injured when you slow down too fast while running. This injury is most common in sports like basketball, soccer, football, tennis, volleyball, downhill skiing, and gymnastics.

Symptoms of an ACL Injury

When you injure your ACL, you may hear an audible pop, or feel a popping sensation in your knee. This is usually followed by swelling and pain. You may feel instability in your knee, and feel it “giving way” when you try to put weight on it.

Diagnosing and Treating ACL Tears

When you injure your knee you should seek medical treatment immediately, as knee injuries can be very serious. Your doctor will likely request an MRI to assess the damage and develop an effective treatment for you.

The open MRI machine at Middletown Medical Imaging can help you diagnose an ACL tear. Make an appointment online today or call at 732-275-0979.

What a Shoulder MRI Can Show Your Doctor

doctor examining woman’s shoulderIf you have been experiencing shoulder pain, your doctor may order an MRI. An MRI uses magnetic fields to get a detailed picture of your bones, tendons, muscles, and blood vessels from any angle. This scan is extremely useful for diagnosing shoulder pain because it allows the doctor to view all of the internal structures within it.

Common Uses of Shoulder MRIs

A shoulder MRI can detect a wide variety of issues, including injuries to the bicep and other soft tissues, rotator cuff tears, and any of the following:

  • Arthritis, labral tears, and other degenerative joint diseases
  • Fractures
  • Rotator cuff impingement
  • Any joint abnormalities due to trauma, such as ligament and tendon tears
  • Infections like osteomyelitis
  • Sports and Work-related injuries from overuse, strain, or forceful impact
  • Tumors
  • Swelling or bleeding in the tissues surrounding your joint
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Checking progress after shoulder surgery
  • and any unexplained pain that is not responding to treatment

If you are experiencing shoulder pain or decreased range of motion in your shoulder, ask your doctor if you will need an MRI. When you need an open MRI in Middletown, NJ, and the surrounding areas, make your appointment at Middletown Medical Imaging. You can call us at 732-275-0999 or book online.

Knee Pain – When an MRI is Useful

woman in workout clothing holding kneeKnee pain is a common issue that can lead to a variety of diagnoses. For many cases, an MRI of the knee is required to truly see what is going on. An MRI uses magnetic fields to create accurate images of the knee, including muscles, ligaments, tendons, menisci and articular cartilage.

Tendons and Menisci – Many knee injuries involve tendons, ligaments, and menisci, like ACL and MCL tears. A regular X-ray cannot detect damage to these parts of the knee, so an MRI is required.

Tumors – If your doctor suspects that there may be a tumor present in the knee, and MRI will enable them to see it clearly.

Detecting Severe Trauma – Injuries to the knee are sometimes more severe than they appear on the surface. An MRI gives your doctor a very clear image of the extent of the damage. This enables them to provide a more accurate diagnosis and therefore a more effective treatment plan.

Preventing Further Injury – Many athletes who suffer knee injuries are anxious to get back on the field, but this can be dangerous if they are not fully healed. Re-injury can sometimes cause permanent retirement from sports. A knee MRI can help determine if the knee is fully healed so that the patient does not exacerbate a previous injury or cause a new one.

When you need a knee MRI, consider getting an open MRI at our imaging center in Middletown, New Jersey. Book an appointment online today.

Are You a Good Candidate for an Open MRI?

If you doctor has told you that you need to get an MRI, you may be looking into open MRI machines. Open MRIs are a great alternative to a traditional closed MRI for a wide variety of reasons. If any of the following applies to you, you are a great candidate for an open MRI.

Claustrophobia – A closed MRI is a loud, narrow, enclosed spaces that can be terrifying for someone who suffers from claustrophobia. In fact, many people have their first claustrophobic episode while having an MRI scan done. If you have any anxiety concerning your upcoming scan, find an imaging center with an open MRI machine.

Spinal Injuries – Spinal cord injuries can prevent you from being able to adjust your body during a scan. For some scans, switching positions in the middle of a scan is necessary. An open MRI machine allows a technician to help you get into the correct positions easily.

Weight Issues – Traditional closed MRIs have a very narrow bore, making it difficult for larger patients to receive a scan. Open MRIs can accommodate patients of any size and shape.

Do you think you are a good candidate for an open MRI? Call our imaging center at 732-275-0979 to book your appointment.

Using Abdominal X-Rays to Diagnose Crohn’s Disease

man with stomach painIf your doctor suspects that you are suffering from Chron’s disease, they may order an abdominal X-ray, which will help them see into your digestive tract. Unlike other X-rays, this procedure will require you to drink a solution of either barium or iodine, which sticks to the walls of your intestines and makes it easier to see where problems may lay. This type of X-ray is called a fluoroscopy.

Upper GI – An upper GI scan looks at your esophagus, stomach, and the first part of your small intestine. This test is also known as a barium or contract X-ray.

Air Contrast – Air contrast or double contrast GI studies provide an even more detailed scan. The doctor will add baking soda crystals to the barium to make it fizz.

Lower GI – Instead of drinking barium, it will be administered as an enema so that the doctor can examine your large intestine. It also shows the end of your small intestine and your appendix.

Your doctor may order one or all of these scans to help them diagnose Chron’s disease. Digital X-ray imaging provided by Middletown Imaging is done using the best medical imaging technology that uses an extremely low dose of radiation. Contact us today at 732-275-0999 to schedule your abdominal X-ray.

How to Prepare for a CT Scan

doctor explaining procedure to patientA CT scan is a procedure used to capture detailed images of any part of the body using X-rays and computer technology. The scan is a non-invasive way to diagnose certain conditions. If your doctor has ordered a CT scan, you will need to prepare for the procedure.

What to Wear – A patient gown will be provided for you, but you should avoid wearing any jewelry, including piercings. You will be asked to remove jewelry before the scan, so it is better to leave anything especially valuable, like a wedding band, at home.

Contrast Media – Before your scan, you may be asked to ingest contrast media to improve the quality of the images taken. The contrast media may also be injected. It is important to tell your doctor if you are allergic to the contrast media so they can decide if it is better to perform the scan without it or provide you with a different diagnostic scan.

If you are having your scan with contract media, do not eat for three hours before your test. If you are not using contrast media, this is not a requirement.

Follow All Doctor Instructions – Before receiving any diagnostic test at our imaging center in NJ, it is essential that you follow all instructions given to you by your doctor. If you do not, it can disrupt the results of the scan.

Contact Middletown Imaging today at 732-275-0999 to schedule your CT scan today.

Things That Can Be Found in an MRI

open MRI machineOn our blog at Middletown Medical Imaging, we have discussed the various types of diagnostic tests that can be done at our facility to find things like cancer, traumatic brain injuries, and hairline fractures in a bone. However, there are plenty of other conditions, diseases, and injuries that an MRI can locate without being invasive to the patient. Here are a few different medical conditions that an MRI can detect without having surgery:

Crohn’s disease – According to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, Crohn’s disease affects over 700,000 people in the United States alone. This painful condition creates inflammation and tearing in a patient’s small bowel and GI tract, which can cause constant diarrhea, weight loss, anemia, and potentially death. An MRI can help doctors see inflammation, tearing, and blockages in the GI tract, which allows them to diagnose Crohn’s disease.

Kidney stones – If you have had a kidney stone before, you know the excruciating pain that comes with passing it. While kidney stones are generally not a life-threatening condition if caught in time, they are something that causes a great deal of discomfort and physical pain to someone who has them. Luckily, surgery is not always needed to get rid of kidney stones, and they can be detected through an MRI or ultrasound to be treated accordingly.

If you are looking for a comfortable, professional, and relaxing open MRI machine experience in New Jersey, turn to our experienced staff at Middletown Medical Imaging to schedule your appointment. Give us a call today at (732) 275-0999.

Sarcoma Awareness Month: What You Should Know

Did you know that July is National Sarcoma Awareness Month? Sarcoma, which is one of the rarest and deadly forms of cancer, is found in the medical digital imagingconnective tissue of the body. Connective tissues can be seen almost anywhere in one part of your body that is adjoined to another, such as any cartilage, muscle, or nerve tissue. We want all of our patients at Middletown Medical Imaging to be aware of the different types of sarcoma and the warning signs of it developing in your body. Here are some fast facts about this rare cancer:

  • According to the Sarcoma Alliance, which is a non-profit foundation dedicated to providing education and research about the disease, there are over 25 subtypes of the cancer.
  • While there are well over 25 subtypes of sarcomas, each subtype can be categorized into either a soft tissue or bone sarcoma.
  • The two major categories, soft tissue and bone sarcoma, are placed depending on where this type of cancer develops.
  • One of the most common age group at risk to develop either a bone or soft tissue sarcoma are children under 20 years old.
  • In addition to children being one of the most diagnosed groups for sarcoma, other people at risk are those who have Paget’s disease, those who have specific genetic disorders, and those who have had family members that have been treated for sarcoma.
  • Certain medical digital imaging, such as CT scans, MRI’s, and ultrasounds, have been crucial in the early detection of sarcoma in many patients.