After being diagnosed with cancer, being aware of your treatment and testing options can be crucial for making informed decisions. For this reason, it can be valuable for you to know the role that your imaging center in San Antonio will play during your cancer treatment. Here, you’ll find information regarding the ways in which imaging might be used for diagnosing, treating, and screening for cancer.
Diagnosing Your Cancer
In many cancer cases, a patient first visits their doctor because of their symptoms, and they are then referred to a medical imaging center. Imaging can be done using a wide range of tools, and the results of these scans and tests give doctors a look at what is affecting a patient’s body, improving their ability to diagnose the problem and develop a treatment plan. Although imaging might play an important part through the whole of your recovery, it can be the most critical during the diagnosis stage.
Evaluating Your Treatment
Throughout this process, your doctor may incorporate additional scanning into your treatment to monitor the cancer and determine how successfully it is being handled. The results of these tests may or may not influence how your doctor proceeds with your treatment. You can anticipate visiting your imaging center several times as you work towards being free of cancer. Some examples of the imaging tools that this may involve are X-rays, PET scans, MRIs, ultrasound, and CT scans.
Screening for Recurrence
Once your treatment is complete and no further signs of cancer are detected, your doctor will explain to you the importance of remaining vigilant. From this point forward, it will be vital for you to watch for any symptoms of returning cancer, and to speak with your doctor and schedule screening tests for relapse as needed. Ongoing attentiveness and getting medical imaging as directed by your doctor will be an essential part of catching cancer early in the case of a recurrence.
Sometimes referred to as CAT scans, CT scans are powerful tools used to create internal images of a patient’s body. The scan is non-invasive and painless, and the results are used by doctors to diagnose and treat a range of conditions. The following are a few examples of why your doctor may order a CT scan in San Antonio :
Pancreatitis refers to inflammation of the pancreas, which is an organ that is responsible for producing insulin and digestive enzymes. Often, acute pancreatitis is a result of gallstones, consuming large amounts of alcohol, infections, high triglycerides, injury, or some types of medications. This condition typically causes symptoms such as severe abdominal pain, sweating, rapid heart rate, fever, jaundice, sweating, nausea, vomiting, and shock. To help diagnose pancreatitis, doctors sometimes send patients to an imaging center for a CT scan.
Attached to your large intestine and forming a 3.5” tube of tissue is your appendix. When this organ becomes inflamed, the result is appendicitis. Many medical professionals consider the appendix to be redundant, and individuals can live with theirs removed without any apparent consequences. The most common symptom of appendicitis is pain in the lower right abdomen. Once an appendix becomes inflamed, it usually needs to be removed to prevent it from bursting or perforating. To help determine if your symptoms are due to your appendix, your doctor may have you get a CT scan.
Most commonly occurring in the lower part of the large intestine, diverticulosis describes the formation of little pockets in the lining of the bowel. Diverticulosis develops when gas, waste, or liquid puts pressure on weakened spots in the walls of the intestine, creating small sacks called diverticula. Diverticulosis has no major symptoms but when one or more diverticula become inflamed or infected, this can cause the person to experience chills, fever, constipation, diarrhea, cramps, or abdominal tenderness, and is referred to as diverticulitis. If your doctor suspects that you have this condition, then she may have you visit an imaging center for a CT scan.
Standing for magnetic resonance imaging, an MRI is a test that physicians use to diagnose and treat a range of medical conditions. Are you scheduled for an MRI near San Antonio , but have concerns about the safety of this type of test? If so, then watch this video to learn more about the nature of an MRI scan.
An MRI machine uses a giant magnet to show internal tissues and structures by producing static images, while fMRIs, also called functional MRIs, are used to view brain activity unfolding over time. This allows doctors to see which areas of the brain are activated to perform different tasks. Unlike X-rays and CT scans, MRIs do not use ionizing radiation, and in studies, the use of these tests have not shown adverse health effects.
Often used in the diagnosis of osteoporosis and other conditions that involve bone loss, a DEXA scan is a type of bone density test. Do you have an upcoming appointment for a DEXA scan near San Antonio? If so, then there are a few steps that you can take to prepare for your test.
For a minimum of 24 hours before your appointment, do not take any calcium supplements. When you go in for your scan, you should be prepared to remove your eyeglasses and any jewelry. Also, consider wearing comfortable clothing, so it will be easy for you to change into a gown if you are asked to do so.
If you have recently undergone any testing that required contrast dye injections or ingesting barium, or if you had a CT scan or radioscopy, then let your physician know, as this may call for a delay of your DEXA scan appointment. Finally, if you are a woman and if there is any chance that you are pregnant, be sure to alert your physician or X-ray technologist.
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