Also known as a computed tomography scan, the CT scan is the gold standard in the diagnosis of a large number of cancers. Used for both diagnosis and screening, this high-tech computer linked x-ray machine takes a detailed series of fine slice images of the body, offering information about the anatomy such as the size, shape and pinpointed location of abnormalities. An exceptionally effective tool for examining dense tissue, the CT scan can also be used as a guide for biopsy procedures.
Ultrasound imaging is based on high-energy sound waves that bounce off internal tissues, forming accurate images for study. The Lacks Cancer Center offers the latest ultrasound technologies, which provide complete evaluations in OB/GYN, vascular color doppler studies, abdominal and pelvic organs, blood vessels, and soft tissues, as well as guidance for needle biopsy, fluid drainage and tumor ablation (destruction). If an emergency diagnosis is needed, we provide same day service with results called directly into your physician's office.
MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)
MRI employs a magnet, radio waves and a computer to make a series of in depth images that accurately pinpoint diseased tissue without exposing it to radiation. Because of MRI's precision capabilities, it is a great problem-solving tool in the detection of tumors. For instance, lesions that have an uncertain diagnosis on CT or ultrasound exams can be better distinguished with MRI. During the MRI procedure, the patient is placed on a table that is moved into the center of a large tubular structure open at both ends. Exam time ranges from 30 to 60 minutes.
Before Your MRI
Patients with implanted electronic devices or metal implants should consult their physicians before undergoing MRI due to its use of very strong magnets. In addition, patients who suffer from claustrophobia or have issues with enclosed spaces should seek a prescription for a mild sedative to make their MRI experience more comfortable.
To learn more about these screening and diagnostic procedures, please talk with your physician or visit www.radiologyinfo.org