Musculoskeletal Ultrasound

Musculoskeletal and Foreign Body Ultrasounds

Your Specialist, General Practitioner or Physiotherapist has referred you for a musculoskeletal or foreign body ultrasound scan. You may have heard about ultrasound before, and may have some questions. This information is to help you with questions you may have.


There is no special preparation for this scan.

How long will it take?

Most scans take between 15 and 30 minutes. The normal (asymptomatic) side may also be examined.

Who will scan me?

Your scan will be performed by either a Sonographer (a technician specialising in ultrasound) or a Radiologist (a Doctor who specialises in medical imaging).

Indications for Musculoskeletal Ultrasound:

Ultrasound will not show every soft tissue abnormality. Your referrer and our Radiologist or Sonographer will know when it is best used. The following are indications:

Muscle Ultrasound:

Muscle injury, large tears and haematomas (bruises), are well shown.


These connect muscle to bone. Tendons in many parts of the body are readily visible with ultrasound, in particular the shoulder, ankle and Achilles tendon.


These are sac-like structures filled with fluid found close to joints. Superficial bursae are found between bone and skin. Deep bursae separate a joint from overlying tendons and ligaments. A swollen bursa can be detected with ultrasound, most commonly seen around the shoulder and knee joints.


These connect bone to bone. Some ligaments can be demonstrated with ultrasound. Others require Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).

Foreign Bodies:

Not all foreign bodies will be visible using x-rays. Most will show with ultrasound. The location and damage to any surrounding structures is readily seen. A skin mark can be applied so the foreign body can be removed at a later time.

After the examination

The Radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring Specialist, General Practitioner or Physiotherapist.

Please settle your account on the day of the examination.


Contact Mokoia Radiology 0800 466 564 to make an appointment.

Contact Us

Contact Us

Mokoia Radiology is located in the Central Health building 1181 Cnr Amohia and Haupapa Street, Rotorua.

View map of our location

Our contact details are:

Freephone: 0800 466 564
P. (07) 343 7468

Please use the contact form for any non-urgent enquiries.



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