The Emory Clinic now has available a new, state-of-the-art dual-source computed tomography (CT) system which will help physicians perform quick, non-invasive examinations on patients without the need to slow the heart with medication -- a step needed in previous scanning devices.
Emory is the first in Georgia, and one of the only centers in the South, to offer this latest technology to its patients. This new CT by Siemens, called SOMATOM Definition, is the first to incorporate two X-ray sources and two detectors in a single scanner.
"With the ability to capture data twice as fast as any existing multi-slice CT technology, the scanner can deliver motion-free cardiac images, independent of heart rate, and reduces the radiation dose to the patient by almost half," according to Arthur Stillman, MD, professor of radiology and the director of cardiothoracic imaging in the Emory University School of Medicine.
"This CT technology allows us to better differentiate between bone, soft tissue and fluid, and will provide to us a much better image of irregular heart beats," he says. "Additionally, patient preparation time that is usually needed to allow the medication to take effect is dramatically reduced, resulting in faster, most accurate scans -- and greater convenience for our patients."
Paolo Raggi, MD, professor of medicine in the Emory University School of Medicine, notes that the scanner's increased speed to produce sharp images of the heart in all phases of the cardiac cycle, will also allow the coronary arteries to be well visualized when the heart is moving slowly or contracting at high speeds.
"The technology now available has truly improved our ability to quickly diagnose and treat many cardiac ailments, while also providing the patient with a much less invasive, time-consuming procedure," says Dr. Raggi. "We can image cardiac patients with high or irregular heart rates and those with problems holding their breath.
CT scans have been used since the 1970s to visualize certain organs and parts of the body slice by slice. They can assist in detecting strokes, head injuries, bone and soft tissue damage in trauma patients, and herniated discs, among other things.
CT scanners come equipped with single-slice, four-slice, eight-slice, 16-slice and 64-slice imaging systems. The more slices a scanner offers, the more precise the scans.
The Definition CT is an entirely new category of CT scanner technology Ð dual source computed tomography (DSCT). Using two X-ray sources and two detectors, it provides twice the speed for exceptional image quality and high acquisition speed in all patients.
About the The Emory Clinic: The Emory Clinic is the largest, most comprehensive physician practice in Georgia, consisting of more than 980 specialists, sub-specialists and primary care physicians who care for patients at one of our many clinics, hospitals and affiliates throughout the Atlanta region. We recently celebrated 50 years of service to the community and through those years, our physicians and surgeons have been responsible for some of the most significant innovations and treatments in health care.