CT scanner a welcome addition to hospital

TICONDEROGA Moses-Ludington Hospital has added a state-of-the-art multi-slice Computed Tomography (CT) scanner to its facility. The new CT scanner features advanced technology that produces split-second high quality images, permitting doctors to see more anatomical detail in a fraction of the time needed for other tests. With this new CT scanner, Moses-Ludington doctors will be able to more effectively detect and treat a range of life threatening illnesses, including cancer, stroke and lung disease. The possibility of discovering disease in an early stage, when a wider array of effective treatment options may be available, will help doctors make an accurate diagnosis, and recommend appropriate treatment for their patients. According to Valerie Brace, radiology manager, We can use the extensive image information we get from this scanner to generate very detailed 3D images which can be used for diagnosis and also shared very quickly with referring physicians and surgeons, where needed, for pre-surgical and for treatment evaluation and follow up. The speed and sub-millimeter detail of the new CT scanner will also contribute to more rapid assessment and decision making in trauma cases, where physicians may have to make life and death decisions within minutes. Patients needing a CT scan will find that Moses-Ludingtons new scanner offers a much more pleasant experience, Brace said. With much faster scan times patients will usually be asked to carry out one brief breath hold during each scan. Older patients and those with breathing difficulties or some other distress will really appreciate the shorter exams, Brace said. Well have them in and out much faster, and their doctors will be able to access detailed, definitive results within minutes. All CT scanners use X-rays, however this new scanner uses a significantly lower amount of X-ray energy than many of the other CT systems on the market. While we need the critical anatomical information we get from a CT scan, we always want to limit the X-ray dose to the patient to the absolute minimum possible, especially for children, Brace said. Our new Brilliance scanner features unique technology that ensures we get exceptional images with significantly lower dose to the patient. And, it has specific built-in pediatric protocols that further minimize the dose to children. Another advantage the hospital anticipates is the ability to provide more large patients with a CT scan option. The new scanner has a table weight capacity of up to 440 pounds. In the past, being able to handle some large patients was sometimes a challenge, because most equipment simply cant accommodate them, Brace said. Our scanner can handle the additional body weight, and those patients will be able to benefit from this great diagnostic technology as well. A CT scan produces a cross-sectional image of the human anatomy which helps the clinician to rule out or confirm the presence of certain disease, and in some cases to evaluate the extent of injuries to a trauma patient, such as someone involved in an automobile accident, Brace said. During the non-invasive test, the patient is placed on a table and moved incrementally through the squared off donut-shaped scanner while an X-ray beam is projected through the cross sections of their anatomy. The X-ray energy passes through the patient and is recorded on electronic detectors in the scanner. This information is then sent to a specialized computer that reconstructs the information into individual slices and combines them sequentially into a comprehensive volume image of the entire area scanned. The thinner the slices, the more revealing the detail is in the resulting images, and the more definitive the exam results. CT scans performed at Moses-Ludington are interpreted by a group of 12 board-certified radiologists from Adirondack Radiology Associates of Glens Falls. The physicians are also associated with Glens Falls Hospital and several area imaging centers providing the same service.

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