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    What is a CT Scan?

    Last updated 1 year ago

    A computed tomography (CT) scan, also known as a CAT scan, is a test designed to examine the internal tissues, structures, and bones within your body using x-ray and computerized technology. 

    This video provides an overview of CT scans. This painless test may be performed to check for blood clots, broken bones, cancerous tumors, infections, signs of heart or vascular disease, and internal injuries. CAT scans may also be performed to help your physician select the correct location for radiation therapy, surgery, or biopsy procedure. Watch this video to learn what to expect during a CAT scan.

    Contact the Southwest Diagnostic Imaging Center and MRI Center in Dallas, TX at (888) 530-1053 for more information on our services. We provide a wide range of imaging and health screening procedures for patients throughout the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. 

    What Does Your Doctor Look for in a Mammogram?

    Last updated 1 year ago

    A mammogram is an x-ray imaging procedure that screens for cancer and other abnormalities in the breasts. Using low-dose radiation, a mammogram creates a digital image of the glandular tissue and fat. While all women over 40 are encouraged to undergo a mammogram screening each year, women with a family history of breast cancer or those with certain risk factors may require earlier or more frequent testing. Continue reading for more information about what your doctor looks for in a mammogram:

    Calcifications

    One of the first things your doctor will look for when performing a mammogram is the presence of calcifications, or tiny mineral deposits located within the breast tissue that could be associated with breast cancer. The two types of calcifications are macrocalcifications and microcalcifications. Macrocalcifications refer to larger calcium deposits that are often caused by inflammation, injury, or age-related changes to the breast arteries. These types of calcifications are usually non-cancerous and do not require a biopsy. Microcalcifications, on the other hand, are tiny specks that may develop alone or in larger clusters, and have a higher chance of becoming cancerous.

    Masses or Cysts

    In addition to identifying macro and microcalcifications, your doctor will assess the results of your mammogram for evidence of cysts or cancerous masses. Cysts may develop as non-cancerous, fluid-filled sacks or more problematic, solid masses that often require a needle-biopsy to rule out the presence of cancer cells. Women with solid cysts or masses will often require additional mammograms in order to track any changes in the size, shape, or edges of the mass.

    To learn more about mammograms and breast cancer screening, contact SWDIC today. Providing the highest standards of service and a patient-centered approach, Southwest Diagnostic Imaging Center is a Dallas leader in diagnostic imaging and health screening. Visit us online to find a location near you, or call us today at (888) 530-1053.

    What is an Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)?

    Last updated 1 year ago

    An intravenous pyelogram, or IVP, is a minimally-invasive procedure that uses x-ray technology to diagnose and treat a wide variety of medical conditions. When would you need an IVP, and how is it performed? Learn more about the uses of and steps involved in an intravenous pyelogram, and schedule an appointment with your doctor if you have additional questions or concerns.

    Uses and Indications

    IVP procedures are performed to examine the bladder, uterus, and kidneys. Your doctor or radiologist may recommend an intravenous pyelogram if you are suffering from pain in your side or lower back, or if you have an enlarged prostate or blood in your urine. IVP procedures can also be performed to detect or track problems of the urinary tract, including kidney stones, congenital anomalies, and tumors or masses.

    Preparation Steps

    All individuals preparing for an IVP procedure are instructed not to eat or drink after midnight the night before the exam, and may be provided with a mild laxative. It is important to inform your physician of all allergies and current medications you are taking to ensure you don’t have an adverse reaction to the iodinated contrast materials used during the procedure.

    Procedure

    During the procedure itself, you will lie on a table while digital x-ray beams are targeted at the affected organ. Iodine-based contrast material is then injected through a vein in the arm. This contrast dye collects in the kidneys, bladder, or uterus, making problems within those organs easier to see. These x-ray beams are then recorded by a digital detector, which creates a computerized, three-dimensional image of the structure being examined.

    Benefits 

    IVP procedures present a number of benefits. In addition to aiding in the diagnosis of many urinary tract conditions, intravenous pyelograms can also be used to detect early signs of cancer and then track the progress of treatment. Additionally, IVP procedures do not allow radiation to remain in the patient’s body following the exam, and rarely have negative side effects. 

    To learn more about IVP and other health screening tests, contact SWDIC today. Providing the highest standards of service and a patient-centered approach, Southwest Diagnostic Imaging Center is a Dallas leader in diagnostic imaging and health screening. Visit us online to find a location near you, or call us today at (888) 530-1053.

    Getting Ready for Your Health Screening: Resources for Further Reading

    Last updated 1 year ago

    Health screening exams like MRIs, CT scans, and other radiology tests are important tools for diagnosing and treating a host of health conditions. If you are being scheduled for one of these procedures for the first time, you may be feeling anxious and uncertain about your health and what to expect. Talk to your radiologist about your questions and concerns, and look for resources that will help you feel more educated and empowered as a patient.   

    • Has your doctor recommend you undergo a coronary CT angiogram? This procedure guide from the Mayo Clinic explains how to prepare for a coronary CT angiogram and what to expect after the procedure.
    • If your doctor suspects that you have a heart condition, he or she may order a diagnostic test. Depending on your health and symptoms, one of several diagnostic scans can be performed to diagnose heart disease.
    • Should you consider getting a DEXA scan? If you have a family history of osteoporosis or other risk factors, ask your doctor if a bone density scan could benefit you.

    To learn more about the different types of diagnostic scans, contact SWDIC today. Providing the highest standards of service and a patient-centered approach, Southwest Diagnostic Imaging Center is a Dallas leader in diagnostic imaging and health screening. Visit us online to find a location near you, or call us today at (888) 530-1053.

    The History and Uses of Magnetic Resonance Imaging [INFOGRAPHIC]

    Last updated 1 year ago

    Around the world, physicians perform Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans every day to diagnose and monitor a variety of health conditions. In fact, 30 million MRI scans are performed each year in the U.S. alone. By generating a powerful magnetic field, an MRI machine aligns the protons in your body to create a three-dimensional image of internal tissues, organs, and structures.

    Did you know that an MRI scan can reveal abnormalities in your bones, organs, and spinal column? To learn more about MRI scans, check out this infographic. You’ll find out who invented the MRI machine, when MRI technology was applied to the medical field, and more!

    If you or a friend is getting ready to undergo an MRI scan, share this infographic and empower yourself with the right knowledge.  

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    Providing the highest standards of service and a patient-centered approach,  Southwest Diagnostic Imaging Center is a Dallas leader in diagnostic imaging and health screening. Visit us online to find a location near you, or call us today at  (888) 530-1053.

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