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Multi-Detector Row CT Enhances Diagnosis

Recently installed Multi-detector CT scanners at St. Maryís Hospital, Upland Hills Health, and Stoughton Hospital offer a new, improved generation of diagnostic capability. Shorter scan times afforded by these new scanners allow higher resolution, thinner sections and other new applications due to this speed.

These scanners change the way physicians look at scans. Rather than just a series of cross sectional images through the body part, a volume of data is obtained, allowing mulitplanar and a variety of 3-D manipulations of the data, resulting in improved imaging quality.

In addition to improvements in routine imaging throughout the body, multidetector row technology excels in producing high quality CT angiograms (see examples). Along with magnetic resonance angiography, these non-invasive means of visualizing the vasculature can replace catheter angiography in the appropriate situations. Typical applications include the thoracic and abdominal aorta, renal arteries, carotid arteries, lower extremities and cerebral vasculature.

Another example of multidector row CTís power is the ability to detect pulmonary emboli (blood clots to the lungs). Shorter breath hold times, thinner reconstructions and greater contrast opacification of the pulmonary arteries now produce higher quality scans to detect pulmonary emboli (see examples).

Manufacturers continue to increase the speed and capabilities of these scanners each year. These hardware advances coupled with improved computer power and evolving software will continue to advance cross-sectional imaging to new levels.

3-D volume rendered images from multidetector CT scan demonstrates bronchial narrowing / stenosis (arrowheads).

Thick slab MIP (maximum intensity projection) of mesenteric vasculature within the abdomen.

Thick slab MIP (maximum intensity projection) of mesenteric and portal veins.

Volume rendered CT angiogram of abdominal aortic aneurysm

Sagittal volume rendered CT angiogram pulmonary arteries and aorta within the chest.

Thick slab MIP coronal of pulmonary vasculature.

Volume rendered image of rib cage.

Coronal multiplanar reformation (MPR) from multidetector CT of the abdomen and pelvis.

Axial thin reconstruction from multidetector row CT of the chest demonstrating multiple bilateral pulmonary emboli (arrowheads).

Coronal multiplanar reformation (MPR) of multidetector row CT of the chest obtained in a patient with pulmonary emboli (arrowhead).

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