Ultrasound
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Dx: Fracture Visible on Musculoskeletal Ultrasound

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You listen proudly as your resident explains to the patient that there is a break in the cortex of the patella on your bedside scan (bottom). The resident then points out the heterogeneous peripatellar fluid collection that is likely a hemarthrosis that developed following his patellar fracture (top). You begin cleaning off the linear array transducer as your resident explains to the patient that he would still recommend an X-ray to evaluate the extent of the fracture and to assess for other associated injuries. The patient seems impressed with your team’s clinical acumen and resource utilization and agrees to have the X-ray taken. You are thrilled that you were able to satisfy the patient’s non-traditional expectations with bedside ultrasound, and excited that your resident has become so proficient with his scanning skills. But nothing made you happier than hearing your patient state on the way out, “Wow, you guys are even smarter than that doctor on House! I can’t wait to tweet to my buddies about how cool ultrasound is!” 

Continue next for Pearls and Pitfalls

 

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