• Why 3D Mammograms Save Lives

    3D mammography offers multiple benefits over traditional imaging tests that can translate into early breast cancer diagnoses. If you are in need of a mammogram, ask your physician to refer you to Concord Imaging Center in San Antonio so that you can receive a 3D mammogram for the most reliable imaging results.

    One of the many advantages of 3D mammograms is their ability to detect abnormal tissue masses that may otherwise go unseen until they have gotten larger on 2D tests. Identifying these areas of tissue early means that treatments can begin sooner, which can be life-saving. 3D mammograms are also better at scanning dense breast tissue, which is a particular issue in young women. Dense tissue can obscure abnormal tissue, which could delay diagnosis. Women also get more peace of mind from 3D mammograms. Because the mammography images are clearer and more detailed with 3D imaging, it reduces the risk of false positives that can lead to unnecessary anxiety and medical testing for non-cancerous cases.

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  • A Quick Look at PET Scans

    Imaging centers in San Antonio can perform PET scans to detect cancer, and monitor its progression or treatment. This medical imaging test can also allow doctors to monitor blood flow to the heart. When you watch this video, you’ll see a simple animation that explains the technology behind PET scans.

    PET scans, or positron emission tomography tests, involve the introduction of radioactive tracers into the body. These tracers bind to certain sugars or proteins. The radioactive isotope produces positrons. As these positrons interact with electrons, both of these particles are destroyed and 2 photons are released. The PET scanner detects the photons and uses advanced software to create 3D images with this information.

  • CT Scans and MRIs: What’s the Difference?

    CT vs MRI: questions about these two types of medical scans are some of the most common ones heard by medical imaging professionals. Both of these options can be used to diagnose a wide range of injuries, abnormalities, and illnesses in the body, but they work using unique technologies and can provide different results. The time available and the purpose of the scan are two primary factors that lead doctors to order either a CT scan or an MRI. If you have questions about CT scans and MRIs, take a look at this infographic from Concord Imaging in San Antonio, TX . Please feel free to share this information with your family and friends.

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  • How PET Scans Are Making Early Alzheimer’s Diagnosis Possible

    Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive condition for which there is no cure, but early detection and treatment can greatly slow the development of the disease. In the past, diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease early has been difficult, but PET scan s are changing that. Thanks to this kind of medical imaging in San Antonio, early Alzheimer’s diagnosis is possible, which gives patients and their families more time to enjoy life without symptoms and to plan for future care needs.

    PET scans are helpful in early Alzheimer’s diagnoses because they allow a radiologist to detect minute changes in the brain’s chemistry that are associated with the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease. By recognizing these changes, your doctor can begin treatments, often when symptoms are very minimal. Although the treatments cannot cure Alzheimer’s or ultimately stop it from worsening, early intervention can dramatically slow the progression of cognitive decline.

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  • How Cancer Patients Can Cope with Scanxiety

    Medical imaging is part of life after cancer, but not surprisingly, it can be anxiety-provoking, so much so that there is a name for it: scanxiety. Although it is normal to experience some nervousness when you visit an imaging center in San Antonio for a body scan during your cancer recovery, there are several things you can do to ease your worry and make the process easier to manage. body - scanning

    Schedule a Follow-Up Appointment

    Part of the anxiety that is associated with a scan is wondering when you are going to hear the results. Before you even attend your imaging center appointment, make an appointment with your doctor to review your scan results. You will feel more confident knowing that you have a plan to find out what your results are and that you know exactly when you will hear, instead of waiting for the phone to ring or checking your mail with baited breath every day. Your radiologist can also explain what happens to your scan after it is done and when your results should be ready so that it doesn’t seem like such a mystery.

    Bring a Support System

    When a scan is making you anxious, don’t suffer in silence. Whether you talk about your feelings with as many friends and family members as you can or just vent to one trusted person, let someone know how you are feeling. Bring a supportive loved one with you to your appointment, so you don’t have to face it alone. Consider making plans for after your appointment, such as getting lunch, going shopping, or going to the movies, so you have something to look forward to as a reward.

    Ask for Help

    For some people, getting a scan can trigger post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms. Your oncologist knows how upsetting a scan can be and can offer help. He or she may be able to recommend support groups for cancer survivors and therapists who can help you manage your anxiety about having a scan.

  • What to Expect During a Thyroid Uptake and Scan Test

    If you’ve been referred to an imaging center in San Antonio to have a thyroid uptake and scan, your doctor might suspect that you have an overactive thyroid, thyroid cancer, or other abnormalities of the thyroid gland. This test is a type of nuclear medicine , which means it relies on the introduction of a radioactive material into the body. Nuclear medicine imaging scans tend to require more preparation than other types of radiology exams. thyroid - gland

    Before the Scan

    You may need to have blood tests performed in the days leading up to your appointment at the imaging center. These tests will measure the level of thyroid hormone in your body. You might be asked to refrain from eating for several hours prior to having the scan. If you have diabetes, be sure to ask if these instructions need to be modified. It’s advisable to leave metallic accessories such as jewelry at home on the day of your appointment. These items can interfere with the test. You should also inform the technologist of your medical history, especially whether you are pregnant, could be pregnant, or are breastfeeding. Let the provider know if you’ve had another test with contrast material performed recently, have any allergies, or are taking medications or supplements. Make a note of any substances you consume that contain iodine, such as kelp, seaweed, multivitamins, or cough syrup.

    During the Exam

    To perform a thyroid scan, the radiologist will first inject the radiotracer and then position you on the exam table. A gamma camera will take images of your thyroid gland from multiple angles. It’s important to hold still during this time. For a thyroid uptake, you’ll be asked to swallow radioactive iodine in a capsule or a liquid. This substance may be ingested several hours to 24 hours before the test. For this test, you’ll sit comfortably in a chair as the probe is positioned over your neck to take the images. Some patients may be asked to return to the imaging center at intervals of four, six, and 24 hours after ingesting the radiotracer.

    After the Appointment

    Most patients can resume their normal activities immediately. It’s important to follow any additional instructions your provider might give you. Drink plenty of water during the rest of the day to help flush the radiotracer out of your body.

  • The Role of Imaging in Your Cancer Treatment Plan

    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. cancer - treatments

    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.

  • Getting Ready for Your Nuclear Medicine Treatment

    Nuclear medicine testing uses a radioactive material to see how the body is processing substances in order to find areas of abnormal processes. Before you undergo a nuclear medicine procedure, your imaging center in San Antonio will give you instructions to help you prepare for your test.

    In most cases, there is no special preparation required for nuclear medicine tests. However, the location that is being studied will determine the kind of preparation you need to complete. For instance, if your doctor wants to study your gall bladder, your medical imaging team may ask you to avoid eating before the test so that there are no obstructions. In other cases, you may need to drink extra water before arriving at the imaging center. Generally, you can take all of your medications as normal, but if you have diabetes, alert your imaging center, particularly if you are asked to skip a meal, so that your blood glucose levels can be managed accordingly.

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  • A Look at Guided Joint Injections

    A joint injection is a way to deliver anti-inflammatory or other medicines directly to the site of pain. Most often, joint injections are recommended for patients with problems of the shoulder, knee, or hip. It is essential that the medicine be directed precisely at the site, which is why these injections may be administered at an imaging center in San Antonio. The radiology team can use X-ray guidance known as fluoroscopy to guide the needle to the correct place. Sometimes, ultrasounds are used instead. If you have been referred to an imaging center for a joint injection, your doctor will let you know how you can prepare and what you can expect.

    Preparation

    Joint Injection Your provider will give you instructions for preparing for the joint injection. You might be asked to restrict your food and water intake. If you take medications, you should find out if you should continue your normal medication dosages. Consider wearing comfortable clothing that allows easy access to the joint that will be treated, if this is possible. Also, bring imaging scans of the joint if you have them. When you arrive at the imaging center, check with the radiologist to be sure he or she has your full medical history. You should disclose whether you have an active infection in the joint or whether you have any allergies to medications.

    Procedure

    The radiologist may perform a preliminary medical imaging scan to locate the injection site. Then, he or she may mark this site on your skin before cleansing your skin to prevent infections. Your skin will be numbed with a local anesthetic to help you remain comfortable during the procedure. Then, under X-ray or ultrasound guidance, the provider guides the needle to the target site to deliver the medications. After removing the needle, the provider will place a bandage on your skin. Usually, this procedure takes about 20 to 30 minutes, although your exact treatment time may vary.

    Recovery

    You may be asked to stay at the imaging center for about 20 to 30 minutes before you leave. This is to monitor you for signs of adverse reactions. Generally, joint injections are well tolerated and have few risks. For a few days, you may experience some soreness in the area. The pain and inflammation should begin to subside within three to five days.

  • How Imaging Is Used During Cancer Treatment

    Facing a cancer diagnosis can feel overwhelming, stressful, and frightening. If medical imaging in San Antonio has revealed that you have cancer, you’ll be working closely with doctors to determine the best course of treatment. Though medical imaging itself is not a treatment for cancer, there are imaging procedures that can help to make your treatment more accurate, and therefore more effective. Medical imaging can also reveal how well a treatment is working, which will guide your doctors in deciding whether to stay the course or alter your treatment plan. Keep reading to learn more about how services from imaging centers are used during cancer treatment.

    Diagnosis

    Cancer Prevention Talk to your doctor to find out what cancer screening tests you should be having, such as a 3D mammogram or a CT scan. Imaging tests can show cancerous tumors in various places in the body, and can reveal the size as well as the scope of the cancer. Radiologists work with oncologists to determine what stage the cancer is in and its proximity to organs. In some instances, a biopsy may be necessary for a more accurate diagnosis, in which case imaging tools such as ultrasound can help ensure that the procedure is more precise.

    Treatment

    Cancer treatment has changed in many ways over the years, partially due to the many uses of medical imaging. Medical imaging such as MRI or CT scans can be used to pinpoint the exact location of a tumor, meaning that the treatment will be more accurate. Surrounding tissues won’t run the same risk of being damaged when medical imaging is used to guide cancer therapy treatments such as radiation.

    Efficacy

    Perhaps one of the most interesting uses of medical imaging in cancer treatment is its ability to show how effective a treatment is. Imaging tests can show if the size of a tumor has changed since treatment began, and may be used at set intervals to track the progress of therapy. If a tumor has not responded to treatment in the way that doctors want, they may change tactics.