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Background: Imaging techniques are providing physicians an opportunity to ensure more accurate diagnostics. While MRI and CT are the gold standard diagnostic tools, they are not utilized as primary diagnostic tools due to their size, immobility, and exposure to radiation. It is not always feasible or practical to wait for a technician in an emergency department to conduct these examinations. As technology continues to advance, diagnostic tools are becoming more portable. X-ray and ultrasound are utilized to diagnose, as well as exclude potential causes of illness. Our objective is to determine which diagnostic tool is more efficient in diagnosing patella/knee injuries.
Methods: This systematic review aims to determine which diagnostic tool is more efficient at diagnosing injuries. By collecting and reviewing existing research to compare the limitations of injury detection, the accessibility and portability of both diagnostic machines, the safety in regards to radiation exposure to patient and physician, the reliability of the diagnoses, and the costs of each machine
Results: Of the reviewed articles, 58% of the articles focusing on knee injuries indicated that ultrasound imaging is a superior diagnostic instrument due to its efficacy and accessibility. When comparing ultrasound to x-ray directly, it was shown that ultrasound is a more precise diagnostic tool.
Conclusion: Ultrasound imaging is a more effective diagnostic tool than x-ray. It is better able to diagnose bone, soft tissue, and vessel injuries. It is a safer tool for both the patient and the physician because it uses sound rather than radiation to produce an image. It is also more accessible as advances in technology have made portable ultrasounds a protocol for quick assessments of injuries.
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