A breakthrough in computed tomography (CT) technology is enabling physicians at Pella Regional Health Center to obtain clearer images of the body and make timelier diagnoses. In September, the hospital installed the new SOMATOM Definition AS CT scanner in the Harmeling Imaging Center. Even more importantly, the system helps achieve outstanding images at a lower dose through its innovative features. This technology is recognized by Frost & Sullivan as the industry's most effective solution for optimizing exam speed, image quality and radiation dose exposure in CT imaging.
“CT scans have become a highly used tool for accurate diagnosis,” said Dr. Lee Henry, radiologist at Pella Regional. “But it’s important that we do as much as possible to protect patients from excessive radiation. This new equipment will help us to ensure patient safety.”
Henry and his radiology partner Dr. Alison Smith are able to use this CT machine to help make faster and more confident diagnosis in emergency and acute care settings, particularly in examining patients with acute chest pain, abdominal pain and suspicion of stroke. They can review results before the patient has left the table, allowing them to provide immediate feedback and quickly determine treatment options. The highest image quality can be obtained even for those patients who are obese, short of breath or who have elevated heart rates.
The SOMATOM Definition AS is the industry’s first scanner that suggests the correct tube voltage depending on the patient’s anatomy and the organ to be examined. All other parameters are automatically adjusted to suit the selected kV level. This optimizes the contrast-to-noise ratio in the image and allows reduction of the dose by up to 60 percent.
The SOMATOM Definition AS also sees tremendous dose-reducing benefit with the Adaptive Dose Shield technology by dynamically blocking the unnecessary dose before and after the spiral scan, ensuring that the only dose applied to the patient is the dose that is relevant.