Diagnostic Imaging
and Referral

Imaging Guidelines for Referral to the Shoulder Assessment
Clinic at the Edmonton Bone and Joint Centre

ULTRASOUND/MR/CT IS NOT REQUIRED PRIOR TO REFERRAL

As general guidance, tertiary imaging such as ultrasound, MRI, or CT should not be ordered in advance of referral. In addition, unless a red flag is identified, an initial course of non-operative treatment is always appropriate.

  • Red Flags:
    • Fracture/Dislocation
    • Infection
    • Tumour
    • Acute traumatic mechanism
      • New injury in a previously unaffected shoulder.
      • Unable to lift 90 degrees in forward elevation.

However, if you are sending your patient for diagnostic imaging, please order the x-ray series below that corresponds with their shoulder issue.

X-ray series should include:

Shoulder Pain (Rotator Cuff Related and Arthritis)

  • True Glenohumeral AP
  • Scapular Lateral
  • Axillary Lateral
  • Zanca View

Shoulder Stiffness (Arthritis and Frozen Shoulder)

  • True Glenohumeral AP
  • Scapular Lateral
  • Axillary Lateral
  • Zanca View

Shoulder Instability

  • True Glenohumeral AP
  • Scapular Lateral
  • Stryker Notch
  • West Point Axillary