Singing River Health System is proud to offer a variety of services to discover and meet your healthcare needs. Having a procedure that utilizes one of our services can be frightening and possibly confusing. To ease any anxiety you might have, find below a list of procedures we offer along with a brief explanation of each.
Angiography is a minimally invasive medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions. Angiography uses one of three imaging technologies and, in most cases, a contrast material injection is needed to produce pictures of blood vessels in the body.
Angiography is performed using:
- X-rays with catheters
- Computed Tomography (CT)
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
CT angiography uses a CT scanner to produce detailed images of both blood vessels and tissues in various parts of the body. An iodine-rich contrast material (dye) is usually injected through a small catheter placed in a vein of the arm. A CT scan is then performed while the contrast flows through the blood vessels to the various organs of the body. After scanning, the images will be processed using a special computer and software and reviewed in different planes and projections.
CT (also known as “CAT”) stands for Computed Tomography, and painlessly and rapidly creates detailed images of the body using x-rays in a specialized machine in which the x-ray tube rotates around the body. A computer is used to figure out the sum of x-ray shadows that its detector “sees” on its rotations, and is able to create very detailed cross-sectional images of any part of the body.
Digital mammography was first available to women in the US in 2000. Unlike conventional mammography, digital mammography sends the X-ray image to a detector rather than film. This detector then sends the acquired image to a computer processor. Digital mammography has proven to diagnose more breast cancers in women who have dense breast tissue and those who are pre-menopausal.
Digital mammography uses less radiation and for some women the workstation can produce images that would have required an additional exposure.
Mammography is the most accurate screening tool in the early detection of breast cancer.
MRI is Magnetic Resonance Imaging, a powerful diagnostic imaging tool. MRI images are produced by using two natural and harmless forces- magnetic fields and radio waves, not ionizing radiation. With the use of computers, the data acquired from your scan is transformed into two dimensional images of your body. The procedure is painless and has no known side effects. With MRI, your radiologist can see the bone and soft tissues in your body, like muscles and internal organs. These images are very sensitive in showing differences between normal and abnormal tissues.
The MRI machine with “open/wide bore” has a larger opening than traditional MRI machines, making it easier for patients who are claustrophobic to have MRI scans without sedation. In contrast to a “completely open” MRI machine, it still has a tunnel the patient must pass through, but the opening (or “bore”) is wider and much shorter. The patient having their spine or pelvis examined will rest with their head and lower extremities outside the magnet.
Nuclear medicine is a branch of medical imaging that uses small amounts of radioactive material to diagnose and determine the severity of or treat a variety of diseases, including many types of cancers, heart disease, gastrointestinal, endocrine, neurological disorders and other abnormalities within the body. Because nuclear medicine procedures are able to pinpoint molecular activity within the body, they offer the potential to identify disease in its earliest stages as well as a patient’s immediate response to therapeutic interventions.
X-ray is the most commonly performed diagnostic imaging examination. X-rays are a form of energy that pass through the body and strike a film to create an image of your body. X-rays are safe when properly used under the supervision of a trained and certified physician.
X-rays are most commonly used to diagnose bone fractures and conditions of the chest and abdomen.