Ultrasound Case of the Month
42 y/o female with right anterior
chest wall pain
Metallic markers placed over anterior chest wall at site of pain.
No abnormality was detected on the initial radiographs.
Figures A and B. Long axis images of the costochondral junction of the right anterior second and third
ribs. (A) Red arrow...
Figure C. Transverse view through the 2nd costochondral junction. A small
hypo-echoic gap ( red arrow) is present in the r...
Diagnosis: Costochondral
junction fracture, right second
anterior rib
Ultrasound provides a sensitive
method to detect rad...
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August 2013: NYU MSK Ultrasound case of the month

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US case of the the month
Rib fracture see on ultrasound and not on X-ray

Published in: Education, Business, Technology
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August 2013: NYU MSK Ultrasound case of the month

  1. 1. Ultrasound Case of the Month 42 y/o female with right anterior chest wall pain
  2. 2. Metallic markers placed over anterior chest wall at site of pain. No abnormality was detected on the initial radiographs.
  3. 3. Figures A and B. Long axis images of the costochondral junction of the right anterior second and third ribs. (A) Red arrow depicts cortical discontinuity along the second rib at the costochondral junction (yellow arrows demonstrate the hyaline cartilage). (B) A normal costo-chondral junction is seen at the third rib (green arrow- rib cortex; yellow arrows- cartilage). The rib appears as a bright reflector with posterior shadowing. A wavy echogenic line below the cartilage represents the pleural surface (blue arrows). The rib and adjacent cartilage should appear as a continuous line. A. B.
  4. 4. Figure C. Transverse view through the 2nd costochondral junction. A small hypo-echoic gap ( red arrow) is present in the rib, corresponding to the non-displaced fracture. This should normally be smooth and continuous. There is dense shadowing deep to the rib. The linear white line deep to the rib relates to the pleural edge (blue arrows).
  5. 5. Diagnosis: Costochondral junction fracture, right second anterior rib Ultrasound provides a sensitive method to detect radiographically occult rib and cartilage fractures. References: 1. Griffith et al. Sonography compared with radiography in revealing acute rib fractures. AJR 1999; 173: 1603-0. 2. Turk et al. Evaluation by ultrasound of traumatic rib fractures missed by radiography. Emerg Radiol 2010; 17: 473-7.
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