CT Arthrogram

CT Arthrogram of the shoulder

A CT arthrogram is a diagnostic study of the joint structures within the body by injection of x-ray contrast (dye).

As the dye disperses, the radiologist documents whether the dye is contained or is leaking, which indicates the stability and integrity of the joint and reveals cartilage tears and other injuries. An arthrogram is sometimes performed as a sole diagnostic test. If the site and nature of the injury are clearly apparent, the diagnostic process may stop here.

In other cases, arthrography can be the first phase of a diagnostic process that also includes CT or MRI scans.


What to Expect

What is a CT Arthrogram used for?

Your doctor may order a CT Arthrogram if they suspect damage to your joints, such a a tear in the ligaments or muscles.

Are there any serious risks?

Typically, no. Some patients may experience a reaction to the contrast dye, but these occasions are rare. Please contact our offices if you suspect or have had a reaction to contrast dye in the past.

How to Prepare

Drink plenty of fluids in the 24 hours before your exam. If your exam includes contrast, do not eat anything for four hours before your exam. Avoid strenuous activity 24 hours in advance of your study. Medications may be taken with a small amount of water. If your exam includes oral contrast, you must drink it 2 hours before your exam. When you arrive for the exam you will be given another cup to drink. Please call our offices if you have a history of contrast reactions/allergies.