Ultrasound-guided versus Computed Tomography-controlled facet joint injections in the middle and lower cervical spine: a prospective randomized clinical trial.

Klaus Galiano, Hannes Gruber, Reto Bale, Alois Albert Obwegeser, Reinhold Schatzer, Alexander Loizides


Objectives: A prospective randomized clinical trial was conducted to evaluate accuracy, time-saving, radiation doses and pain relief of ultrasound-guided (US) facet joint injections versus Computed Tomography (CT)-controlled interventions in the cervical spine. Material and methods: Forty adult patients were consecutively enrolled and randomly assigned to the US- or CT group. US-guided facet joint injections were performed on a standard ultrasound device using a broadband linear-array transducer. The corresponding comparison group underwent CT-guided instillations which were performed under standardized procedures using the CT-positioning laser function. Results: The accuracy of ultrasound-guided interventions was 100%. The mean time (min:sec) to final needle placement in the US group was 04:46 versus 11:12 (p0.05). Conclusions: US-guided intra-articular injections show the same therapeutic effect as CTguided intra-articular injections and result in a significant reduction of procedure duration without any exposure to radiation.


facet joints injections; cervical spine; radiation dose; computed tomography; ultrasound

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.11152/mu.2013.2066.151.jo1ugc2


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