There are many reasons why your doctor may recommend that you undergo ultrasound imaging in San Antonio. An anatomical ultrasound produces medical images of the various structures inside your body. A functional ultrasound also produces medical images; however, it allows physicians to evaluate various functions of the body , such as the movement of blood. Ultrasound, or sonography, can even be used for therapeutic interventions. Therapeutic ultrasound can be helpful for dissolving blood clots or destroying tissue such as tumors.
You can learn more about medical ultrasound by watching this video presented by the National Institutes of Health. This video explains how an ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images, and the many ways an ultrasound can be helpful for diagnostic and interventional purposes.
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Medical images such as X-rays are helpful for diagnosing health problems, including bone fractures. If you’re anticipating undergoing an X-ray in San Antonio , you may wish to learn more about the technology. An X-ray machine transmits X-rays, which are a form of electromagnetic radiation. The X-rays travel through the body to an X-ray detector on the other side of the patient. Different bodily structures absorb X-rays in varying amounts. A film or digital sensor can use these discrepancies to produce 2D images.
You can see a demonstration of medical images by watching this video. You’ll learn how the differences in the composition of your bones help create images of the internal structures of your body.
Alzheimer’s is among the most devastating of diseases, both because it affects so many families and because it inevitably robs a person of his or her abilities. So far, efforts to find a cure have not been successful and treatment is limited to the management of symptoms. However, exciting new research is being conducted on possible ways to detect Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms arise, which may pave the way for the use of treatments before irreversible brain damage has occurred. Patients who are interested in having an Alzheimer’s test can contact a center for medical imaging near San Antonio to discuss scheduling a PET scan.
To learn how a PET scan can aid the detection of Alzheimer’s disease, it can be helpful to have a basic understanding of the changes in the brain. Biological markers, or biomarkers, are often used in the diagnosis of medical conditions. For example, a person’s fasting blood glucose is used in the diagnosis of diabetes. Researchers are currently evaluating the use of a few biomarkers for the early detection of Alzheimer’s, one of which is amyloid plaques.
Understanding Amyloid Plaques
The brain of an individual with Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the accumulation of amyloid plaques between the nerve cells, or neurons. Amyloid refers to protein fragments. Normally, the brain is able to eliminate these protein fragments. However, in a person with Alzheimer’s, the fragments cluster together to form plaques.
Using Molecular Imaging Tracers
The first molecular imaging tracers have been recently approved by the FDA. The first is florbetapir F-18, or Amyvid. This molecule is able to bind to beta-amyloid and since it has a radioactive tracer, physicians can detect it with a PET scan. This enables physicians to evaluate a person’s brain for the presence of amyloid plaques. Amyvid was approved for use in 2012 and since then, two more molecular imaging tracers have been approved.
Studying Fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) with PET Scans
Through the use of PET scans, researchers know that individuals with Alzheimer’s often experience reduced brain activity in some areas of the brain. Researchers have used FDG with PET scans to establish the reduced use of blood glucose by the brain in regions that are associated with memory, problem solving, and learning. It is believed that this information will one day be useful in detecting Alzheimer’s disease with PET scans.
Concord Imaging, a center for medical imaging in San Antonio, owes its success in this community to the dedication of our radiology professionals in providing compassionate care to our patients. We continually strive to provide exemplary service to facilitate strong relationships with patients and physicians. Dr. Jennifer Harper is one of our physicians who embody those values. Dr. Harper specializes in medical images that serve the needs of women in our community, such as 3D mammography. She is also highly skilled in cross-sectional medical imaging.
Before Dr. Harper joined our team at Concord Imaging in 2009, she earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Texas, after which she traveled to Germany for postgraduate work as a Fulbright Scholar. After earning her medical degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, Dr. Harper completed her Diagnostic Radiology residency at the University of Texas Health Science Center. Later, she obtained board certification in Radiology and underwent fellowship training in mammography.
Your health is important, and it’s up to you to take good care of yourself so that you can lead a long, healthy life. Things don’t always go according to plan, however, and your doctor might recommend an MRI, CT scan, or digital x-ray in San Antonio depending on what’s happening with your health. If your doctor advises you to have an imaging test, remember that you have a choice of where to have the exam. A free-standing imaging facility like Concord Imaging will often have lower prices for the same tests using the same high-tech equipment that hospitals use. Talk to your doctor about your preferences for medical imaging—after all, it’s your health, your money, and your choice. Take a look at this infographic to learn more about patient choice for medical imaging near San Antonio, and share with your friends and family.
Medical images such as positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) scans are routine procedures that physicians often request for diagnostic purposes. Although the procedure to obtain these medical images is completely painless, some patients may feel a little nervous about their appointment. It can be helpful to become better informed about the procedure and to call the center for medical imaging near San Antonio if you have any questions.
What Is PET/CT Scanning?
Nuclear medical imaging, such as a PET scan, involves the use of very small amounts of radioactive material, called radiopharmaceuticals or radiotracers. Physicians rely on nuclear medicine to diagnose and treat many diseases, along with evaluating the severity of those diseases. The radiopharmaceutical enters the body and a special imaging device tracks the emissions to produce molecular information. PET scans are used to evaluate blood flow, sugar metabolism, and oxygen use. Advanced medical imaging centers can superimpose CT scans with these nuclear medical images, which is commonly called image fusion. This can help inform a more accurate diagnosis by providing precise information.
Why Is this Procedure Recommended?
You might be referred to a radiology center for a PET/CT scan for a variety of reasons. PET/CT scans are frequently used to diagnose cancer , assess whether the cancer has spread, and evaluate whether a cancer treatment has been effective. This medical imaging procedure is also useful for evaluating the flow of blood to the heart, assessing the damage caused by a heart attack, and identifying brain abnormalities in conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and seizures.
How Can I Prepare for My Appointment?
Before undergoing any medical procedure, you should inform the physician or technician if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if there is a possibility that you could be pregnant. Alert the technologist to your medications, allergies, and recent illnesses. You may be asked to avoid eating for a few hours prior to your appointment. You should also refrain from consuming beverages with calories. When you arrive at the medical imaging center, you will be asked to remove any objects that may interfere with the test, such as hearing aids, eyeglasses, jewelry, hairpins, and dentures.
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