Stress radiographs are useful in determining the amount of ligamentous laxity present following trauma. The results may be helpful in determining diagnosis, surgical indications, and the type and timing of rehabilitation. Some techniques for obtaining stress radiographs involve specific patient positioning or manually applied force; others require use of a particular testing device. Stress radiographs may be obtained for a variety of anatomic areas and joints. The parameters that define abnormality on stress radiographs should be compared with those of clinical findings. The use of common and novel methods to obtain stress radiographs has led to improved identification and diagnosis of many orthopaedic pathologies. Some of these techniques have been developed with the aim of reducing patient discomfort or minimizing the clinician's exposure to radiation.
Dr. Lafferty is Trauma Fellow, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Regions Hospital, St. Paul, MN, and Instructor, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN. Dr. Min is Chief Resident, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases, New York, NY. Dr. Tejwani is Associate Professor, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases.
Dr. Tejwani or a member of his immediate family is a member of a speakers' bureau or has made paid presentations on behalf of Stryker, Biomet, and Zimmer and has received research or institutional support from Biomet. Neither of the following authors nor a member of their immediate families has received anything of value from or owns stock in a commercial company or institution related directly or indirectly to the subject of this article: Dr. Lafferty and Dr. Min.
Reprint requests: Dr. Tejwani, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases, 550 First Avenue, NBV 21 West 37, New York, NY 10016.
Copyright 2009 by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.