Orthopedic Imaging and Diagnostic Testing

Diagnostic imaging is a medical technique or procedure used to assess and diagnose conditions related to the musculoskeletal system, which includes bones, joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and other structures. The primary purpose of these services is to identify injuries, diagnose disorders, plan treatment, and monitor progress. The primary purpose of these services is to identify injuries, diagnose disorders, plan treatment, and monitor progress.

At South Bend Orthopaedics, we offer a range of diagnostic and imaging services to help identify the specific nature of your musculoskeletal injury or condition. Whether you need an X-ray, MRI, or something else entirely, you can get the exact test you need when you need it. This allows us to provide you with effective and comprehensive care. Your results are available when your doctor needs them, so you can begin your treatment as soon as possible. It’s all part of our commitment to offering you progressive, high quality care and the utmost in convenience.

What to Expect During Your Visit

Evaluation of pain requires a physician experienced in diagnosing conditions. The work-up begins with a detailed history and physical examination. Your medical history helps the doctor understand your pain and the influence of your lifestyle on your pain. During your physical exam, your physician will try to pinpoint the source of pain. Simple tests for flexibility and muscle strength may also be conducted. Diagnostic tests may be ordered to confirm the location and source of your pain.

A patient laying down about to into MRI

Types of Diagnostic Tests Used in Orthopedics

Each of these techniques provides different types of information and is chosen based on the specific situation and the area of the body being examined. These orthopedic imaging and diagnostics play a crucial role in improving the diagnosis and management of musculoskeletal conditions, ultimately helping you regain function and mobility. Diagnostics we perform may include:


X-ray technology is used for the examination of internal organs, bones, blood vessels, and the progression of diseases such as cancer. It can also detect infection, blockages and foreign objects.


Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) uses a very powerful magnet to produce images and no ionizing radiation is used. The scan produces cross sections or slices of internal structures, such as ligaments, tendons, and cartilage. Sometimes a contrast agent may also be injected to help enhance certain structures and aid in diagnosis.

CT Scan/Myelogram

Computed Tomography (CT) uses an x-ray tube and computer to produce cross sections or slices of internal structures. Sometimes a contrast agent may also be injected to help enhance certain structures and aid in diagnosis.

Bone Scan

A bone scan is a diagnostic study that uses a traceable radioactive substance to view your bone structure. It is used to assess areas of damage, cancer, infection and trauma.


Electrodiagnostic medicine is a medical subspecialty of neuromuscular medicine that aids in diagnosis, evaluation, and treatment of neuromuscular, musculoskeletal, and nervous system disorders. Electrodiagnostic physicians record and analyze results from the patient’s history and physical examination along with test results obtained from conductance of electrical impulses between muscles and nerves. Electrodiagnostic medicine helps in evaluating the causes of numbness, tingling, discomfort, weakness, fatigue, and muscle cramps.


Discography is performed under local anesthesia and takes less than an hour. You will lie face down on an operating table. Your back is marked in the region of the painful spinal discs. A guide needle is inserted under fluoroscopic imaging (live X-ray) until it reaches a disc. A smaller disc needle is passed through the guide needle to reach the center of the disc. Sterile liquid, such as X-ray dye, is then injected into the disc. This increases the pressure within the disc and may reproduce your pain symptoms. If the disc is not the source of your pain, you may either have no symptoms or unfamiliar symptoms. A group of discs may be tested one at a time to identify the pain source. Scans are obtained once each disc is pressurized.

Why Choose South Bend Orthopaedics for Imaging and Diagnostic

Are you tired of living with musculoskeletal pain or uncertainty about your orthopedic health? Let us help you uncover the cause so we can find a solution. South Bend Orthopaedics is your trusted partner on the journey to recovery and well-being. Choosing SBO for your imaging and diagnostic testing means you can expect:

Don’t let orthopedic issues hold you back any longer. Whether it’s a sports injury, joint pain, or any musculoskeletal concern, we’re here to help you regain your strength, flexibility, and independence. Book your appointment online today or call us at 574-247-9441 and get the imaging and diagnostic tests you need to start your road to recovery.