What is the role of ultrasonography in the workup of bursitis?

Updated: Dec 11, 2020
  • Author: Kristine M Lohr, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

Ultrasonography is useful for further imaging of the bursa when the diagnosis is uncertain. For diagnostic aspiration or treatment injections, ultrasonography may be performed to elucidate the structures and to guide procedures. The accuracy of ultrasound-guided injections has increased; however, studies of the efficacy of ultrasound-guided versus blinded injections provide controversial results. [27, 28] In addition, ultrasound studies distinguish solid from cystic masses and are helpful in detecting Baker cysts (popliteal bursitis) when there are extensive joint deformities. [11, 29] Baker cysts are often discovered incidentally when lower-extremity Doppler studies are done to rule out deep vein thrombosis.


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