Podiatry and Medical imaging

Updated: Mar 3

What for, and when to do it!

Medical imaging can be a vital part of the process when it comes to diagnosing and creating a targeted and effective treatment plan. However, often we can diagnose an injury or foot problem based off our examination in the room, and so medical imaging is not required. This saves you time by not having to go to a facility to get the imaging done!

So if most of the time we can figure out the problem without imaging, when and why do we need to get imaging done? For certain injuries, medical imaging is used to determine the extent or severity of the injury. For example, its easy for us to say that you have sprained your lateral ankle, but sometimes we need to know how badly you've sprained it. This helps us decide what treatment is best, and when we should start with strengthening and weight-bearing!

What Imaging Can a Podiatrist Send For?

Typically, A Podiatrist can send for Ultrasound and X-ray imaging of the foot and ankle gap free, meaning you will have no out of pocket costs. MRI imaging can also be requested by a Podiatrist, but will often incur a cost for the patient, with the price varying from Imaging clinic to clinic.

When will my Podiatrist send me for imaging?

As mentioned above, for certain injuries like ankle sprains, we will often send for imaging to decide how serious the problem is. Similarly, if the Podiatrist is struggling to differentiate between two different injuries, they will send for imaging to confirm what the problem is.

What sort of injuries is it common to get imaging for?

There is a handful of injuries we commonly get imaging done for, such as the ones below:

  • Forefoot pain (capsulitis, bursitis, plantar plate pathology, stress fractures, neuroma)

  • Lateral Ankle Sprains

  • Tibialis Posterior Tendinopathy

  • Fractures or breaks

  • And rarely, Plantar Fasciitis (most of the time, we can diagnose this one really easily without imaging!)

The reason we will often send for imaging for the above problems is for a variety of reasons. For forefoot pain, we often send for imaging because there are so many different potential diagnosis that can present very similarly in our testing! Yes, there are specific tests for specific injuries, however sometimes these tests aren't conclusive, so imaging becomes the best choice.

As well as this, sometimes recovery doesn't go the way we expect it to. The human body is a complex machine, and sometimes it responds differently to rehab or treatment than we expect, so in these cases, we can send for imaging to make sure we haven't missed anything.

So, if you have a query about an injury or you would like to find out for sure what the little niggling feeling in your toe is, get in touch! We can start you in the right direction to find the root cause of your pain.

We hope you have found the above information helpful. If you need any further information or wish to make an appointment with one of our podiatrists, we would love to help you.

We are located at 108 Bridport St, Albert Park Vic 3206, or you can call us on 03 8648 7678. Alternatively, you can click on the book now button below and it will take you to our online booking page.

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