Soft Tissue – Abscess

Introduction:

Although point of care ultrasound has many applications, our principal use for soft tissue ultrasound is evaluation for abscess.  Point of care ultrasound can differentiate cellulitis from abscess and has been shown to change management.

Focused Questions:

  1. Is there a hypoechoic collection?
  2. Is there cobblestoning consistent cellulitis?

Required Views:

1. Transverse and Longitudinal views of area of concern

Cellulitis

Cellulitis is a diffuse inflammatory process and the resultant hypoechoic edema results in the typical “cobblestoning” seen on ultrasound.

Screen shot 2011 10 10 at 2.57.33 AM 500x319 Soft Tissue   Abscess

Cobblestoning of Cellulitis on Ultrasound

Abscess

When abscess forms in the setting of cellulitis, both cobblestoning and a defined collection of fluid may be seen on ultrasound.  This fluid is typically hypoechoic or anechoic but debris may be seen within the abscess cavity as well.

Screen shot 2011 10 10 at 3.09.46 AM Soft Tissue   Abscess

Abscess on Ultrasound

 

 

One thought on “Soft Tissue – Abscess

  1. Pingback: Probe before Scalpel | Five Minutes Out

Leave a Reply