Current Concepts and Advances: Computerized Tomography in Sports Medicine

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Computed tomography (CT) is a widely used imaging technique. With the introduction of multidetector row technology, CT has been further refined. Although the focus of this transformation has been body and cardiac imaging, orthopedic imaging has benefited greatly. Specifically, the improvements in CT have made it possible to obtain submillimeter-thick slices that enable the creation of high-resolution multiplanar reformations from a single scan. These images usually are indistinguishable from direct plane acquisitions and provide unparalleled detail. Additionally, the factors responsible for causing CT image artifacts when hardware is present are much better understood and the improvements in CT technique and technology can be exploited to provide better images of patients with orthopedic hardware. The detailed multiplanar visualization of joints facilitates CT arthrography that has undergone a renaissance. CT arthrography is useful in the very large athlete or patient, the claustrophobic, and for those patients who fail a conventional magnetic resonance examination or magnetic resonance arthrogram.

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