Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Scottsdale Radiology Report, Winter 2014

Scottsdale Medical Imaging's Radiology Report keeps referring physicians informed of imaging techniques and benefits offered by the group. It is a printed publication available online in PDF form on the company's website.

In addition to radiologists providing 24/7 medical image reading coverage at Scottsdale Healthcare hospitals, Scottsdale Medical Imaging operates 14 state-of-the-art outpatient imaging centers including our Interventional Radiology Clinic which provides patients minimally invasive treatments for a broad range of health conditions, often on an outpatient basis. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

MRI Offers Powerful Research Tool for Assessing Lipid-Lowering Therapy

MRI scans might give researchers a powerful new tool for monitoring the effectiveness of lipid therapies for coronary or carotid artery disease, a new study shows.

Led by Dr. Xue-Qiao Zhao, of the University of Washington, Seattle, the researchers sought to determine if cholesterol-lowering drugs deplete plaque lipid content. Zhao told the Hub by e-mail that they used MRI as a tool to make direct assessment of the plaque tissue composition during treatment. The study appears in the October issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging. (Link to published site)

(Archive copy)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

MRI Mismatch May Identify Stroke Patients within Critical Treatment Window

A mismatch in the images produced by two different MRI techniques of patients experiencing a stroke are likely to indicate that patients are candidates for intravenous thrombolysis, a new study shows.

The study, led by Dr. Götz Thomalla, of the Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf, Germany, adds to the growing evidence that diffusion-weighted (DWI) MRI and fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) MRI may be useful for identifying patients who are within the 4.5 hour window when thrombolytic therapy is beneficial. The study is online ahead of print publication in October, The Lancet Neurology. (Link to published site) (Archive)

Friday, October 7, 2011 

Breast Imaging Market Resumes Steady Growth

Replacement of these older analog
mammography machines in part
has fueled growth of the breast
imaging device market. (Photo
courtesy of National Institutes of Health)
The market for breast imaging devices is expected to recover and continue growing at compound annual growth rate of 10 percent, reaching over $1 billion by 2017, a market analysis shows.

The report prepared by iData Research observes that a strong trend for faster, higher quality imaging has resulted in an almost entire replacement of older analog mammography with more advanced systems.  In addition, emergence of breast-specific gamma imaging (BSGI) as a supplement to mammography and ultrasound is the fastest growing segment of the breast imaging market. Together they form the basis of a projected double-digit growth of the market. (Link to published site) (Archive copy)

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Telemedicine Is Cost Effective for Rural Stroke Patients

Dr. Jana Wold, assistant professor of Neur-
ology consults with and emergency depart-
ment doctor at a rural hospital using the
telestroke technology. (Photo courtesy
University of Utah Health Care Stroke Center.)
Telemedicine might be a cost-effective solution for improving stroke patient treatment at rural hospitals that cannot employ a full-time neurologist, researchers say.

Researchers at the University of Utah Health System in Salt Lake City, Utah in collaboration with researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona, used a complex statistical model to compare the cost-effectiveness of stroke treatment using telestroke in rural emergency departments with stroke treatment provided in similar emergency departments without the 2-way audiovisual system. The study appears in the Sept. 20, 2011 journal Neurology. (Link to published site)

Friday, September 16, 2011

MRI Breast Cancer Screening In High-Risk Women Boosts Detection Rates

MRI shows known breast cancer on the left side of the image. The left breast (right side of the image) reveals a small occult cancer that was not clinically apparent or visible on the screening mammogram. (Image courtesy University of Washington Breast Center)
MRI shows known breast cancer
on the left side of the image.
(Image courtesy University of
Washington Breast Center)
Using MRI to screen women with a history of lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS) improved the rate of cancer detection, a pair of new studies show.

LCIS is a non-invasive breast cancer that requires no immediate or active treatment, according to the American Cancer Society; however having LCIS increases the risk that these women will later develop a malignant tumor. Consequently these women are closely followed with yearly mammograms and a clinical breast exams.

Adding magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to screen for breast cancer is controversial. A 2007 European review of MRI with mammography for high-risk women found that MRI improved sensitivity to as high as 94 percent, but specificity with MRI was less consistent with a 3-5-fold higher risk of patient recall for false positive results. (Link to published site) (Archive copy) 

Diabetes patients treated by pro-
viders using electronic health
records received better quality
of care and achieved better
intermediate outcomes than 
patients treated by providers
using paper medical charts.
(File photo)
People treated for diabetes by providers using electronic health records (EHRs) were significantly more likely to achieve outcomes in line with diabetes care standards than patients whose doctors relied on paper records.
The study published in this week’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that the federal investment inelectronic health records will likely produce benefits in both quality of care and better outcomes.
Led by Dr. Randall Cebul, professor of medicine at Case Western Reserve University, the study involved 27,207 adults withdiabetes in the Cleveland area. (Link to published site)


MRI May Predict Survival After Neoadjuvant Therapy for Rectal Cancer

MRI of rectal cancer may be used
to predict outcomes, new research
shows. (Image by permission of
Learn Colorectal Surgery.)
Using high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)researchers have shown for the first time that MR imaging can be used to assessneoadjuvant treatment response before surgery forrectal cancer. The researchers concluded that MRI may also be used to predict overall and disease-free survival in these patients.

The researchers led by Dr. Gina Brown, honorary senior lecturer in the Department of Radiology at the Royal Marsden Hospital in Sutton, UK, analyzed the results of a subgroup of the MERCURY trial to measure tumor shrinkage in 111 patients treated with chemotherapy, radiation or both before surgery. Brown told The Hub by e-mail that the difference in this study and previous research was that the radiologists in this study paid careful attention to circumferential resection margins (CRM) and fibrosis following treatment. (Link to published site)

Natural Language Search Tools Hold Promise for EHR-based Quality Improvement

Searching electronic medical records using natural language processing identified postoperative complications better than more commonly used data codes, researchers say. Led by Dr Harvey Murff, of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center and Vanderbilt University, researchers conducted a study of database searching to identify a set of 20 measures of patient safety indicators based on discharge coding to screen for potential adverse events that occur during hospitalization. ... READ MORE

(Archive copy)

MRI Of Vessel Wall Thickness Links Pericardial Fat With CVD…

Using MRI to measure plaque in coronary arteries, researchers have determined that fat around the heart is a better predictor of atherosclerosis than BMI and waist circumference in asymptomatic men but not women. When the researchers made adjustments for BMI, waist circumference, C-reactive protein level and coronary artery calcium content, the relationship between pericardial fat and coronary atherosclerosis remained significant in men but not in women.  ... READ MORE

Researchers Report Stride In Developing Endoscopic OCT…


Researchers report an important advance in developing an ultra-high speed, optical coherence tomography (OCT) system that one day may allow doctors to see just below the surface of some tissues with microscopic detail. The technology is aimed at detecting microscopic pre-cancerous changes in the esophagus or colon. Led by Dr. James Fujimoto, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the researchers ... READ MORE

(Archive copy)


Real World Study Questions Effectiveness of CAD Mammography
Radiologists use computer-aided tech-
nology for a "second read" of screen-
ing mammograms. (Photo courtesy of
Wikipedia user Zackstarr)

Computer-aided detection tools add to the cost of screening mammography for breast cancer but add little in terms of finding undetected harmful tumors, while increasing the number of false positives, a new study shows. … Read more

New Cardiac CT Technique Reduces Radiation Sevenfold in Children

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Beta blockade combined with newer multi-detector CT angiography (MDCTA) reduced radiation exposure sevenfold compared to older scanners a new study shows. The new method may be the safest for coronary imaging for certain pediatric patients. In a retrospective study of all coronary CTAs performed on patients less than 18 years of age at Minneapolis Heart Institute®, researchers found that not only did newer CTA techniques use lower doses of radiation than early CTA, ... Read more


Stress Echocardiography Predictive of Heart Attack or Death in HIV Patients

HIV patients with abnormal results on a ultrasound stress test have nearly a 10 times higher risk of a heart attack or cardiac death than the normal population, and more than three times the risk of people without HIV who have an abnormal stress echocardiogram a new study shows. ... Read more

First use of Metal Nanoparticles IDs Liver Cancer on …

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Using metal nanoparticles for the first time as an imaging agent researchers have developed a new technique to detect heptocellular carcinoma at a much earlier, treatable stage than is currently available, a new study suggests. Heptocellular ... Read more

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For the first time, a screening program for lung cancer has produced a reduction in lung cancer deaths. The US National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) published data today showing that routine low-dose CT scans in heavy smokers reduced deaths by 20 ... Read more

Archive copy

CT Scanner Fears Stem from Errors not Dose Measures…

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Growing scrutiny about the safety of CT scans has arisen in part out of widely publicized cases of excessive CT scanning, and of radiation over-exposure in CT scans, particularly CT perfusion scans for stroke, which have raised questions about CT ... Read more

Telemedicine Program Matches Outcomes of Specialty …

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Remote patients and prison inmates treated for hepatitis C by primary care physicians with telemedicine help from a university specialty clinic achieved equal viral suppression as patients treated at the university clinic, a new study ... Read more

Electrical Tomographic Imaging Produces First 3-D …

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Using an entirely new tomographic imaging method called "functional electrical impedance tomography by evoked response," researchers have for the first time produced a 3-D movie of a brain as it loses consciousness. Led by Dr. Brian ... Read more

CT and MRI Utilization Varies According to Differences …

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Stroke patients at a US hospital underwent more than twice as many magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies as similar patients treated in a Canadian hospital. At the same time, Canadian stroke patients underwent significantly more scans than U.S. ... Read more

U.S. Young Adults Already Benefiting from Healthcare …

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Young adults between ages 19 and 29 are among the first U.S. groups to benefit from the Affordable Care Act, with more than 600,000 who were previously uninsured having obtained medical insurance coverage, a new report shows. The report entitled ... Read more

PET Scans Can Speed Treatment For Multi-drug-Resistant TB…

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PET scans can detect whether a standard drug regimen for a difficult-to-treat form of tuberculosis is working in HIV patients within four weeks – two to four weeks sooner than current tests. Early detection of such drug-resistant strains of TB is critical as it is fatal in most people if not treated aggressively. Researchers led by Dr. Mike Sathekge, head of the Department of Nuclear Medicine at Pretoria University, South Africa, say that the drug resistant strain ... Read more 

CT Angiography in Low-risk Patients Leads to More …

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Undergoing a coronary CT angiography (CCTA) often leads to greater use of medications and significantly more additional testing including invasive catheterizations in low-risk patients compared to similar patients who did not undergo CT angiography, ... Read more

U.S. Health Law to Cut Costs by $120 Billion in Five …

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Much of the heated debate over President Obama’s Affordable Care Act in 2009 centered on the question of how the plan would save money. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a report this past week showing how it will save ... Read more

Performing SPECT myocardial perfusion to image coronary arteries at half the usual radiation exposure yielded good or excellent images 95 percent of the time according to researchers in Israel. The study led by Dr. Nili Zafrir, of the Rabin Medical Center in Petah Tikva, Israel, used special imaging software to produce the enhanced images that were comparable to full-dose protocols. She presented her study results at the ICNC10 - Nuclear Cardiology and Cardiac CT ... Read more

Telemonitoring in ICU Reduces Mortality But Not …

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Telemedicine may offer rural and remote patients access to specialists not available in their local hospital, but access to specialists in Intensive Care made little difference in mortality according to a meta-analysis of more than 40,000 critically ... Read more
The World Health Organization (WHO) released its life expectancy tables last month, and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released its 2010 healthcare statistics on May 11. The OECD includes data from the Internet ... Read more

 MRI Shows Foot Fractures in Diabetes Patients often …

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MRI studies of patients with type 2 diabetes are more likely to have a fracture of the cuboid bone than non-diabetic patients, and the fracture is often not found by conventional x-rays, a new study shows. In the study, the researchers compared MRI ... Read more

CT Imaging Boosts Diagnosis of Lung Clots without …

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Multidetector CT imaging used for pulmonary angiography (CTPA) may be too much of a good thing. A new study shows that while CTPA has nearly doubled the number of people diagnosed with pulmonary embolisms, it has not resulted in a decrease in ... Read more

Early HIE Initiatives Suggest Grants are Being Put to …

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(Editorial) – It’s been a little more than a year since the U.S. Office of the National Coordinator announced the State Health Information Exchange (State HIE) Cooperative Agreement Program grants in March 2010.  In total, 56 states, eligible territories, ... Read more

Pelvic CT Unneeded with CT Pulmonary Angiography…

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CT imaging of the pelvis is unnecessary in patients undergoing CT imaging for a suspected pulmonary embolism and concomitant evaluation for venous thromboembolism a new study shows. The result could cut radiation exposure in people undergoing CT ... Read more

Protocol for MRIs with Contrast Dye Eliminates Serious …

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A rare and serious condition that causes fibrosis of the skin, joints, eyes and internal organs, can be prevented by carefully restricting the use of a contrast dye commonly used in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), a new study shows. Researchers ... Read more

U.S. Takes a ‘Whack-a-mole’ Approach to Healthcare …

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(Editorial) – A bill re-introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives this past week seeks to limit so-called self-referrals by doctors who own or have financial interests in imaging services such as MRI, CT and PET. Introduced by Rep. Jackie Speier ... Read more

Women Have Greater Risk Of Kidney Injury Resulting …

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Women are 60 percent more likely than men to experience kidney damage from the dye used in x-ray angiograms to diagnose coronary artery disease a new study shows. The study, presented this week by Dr. Javier Neyra at the National Kidney ... Read more

Telemedicine Can Deliver Cardiac Rehabilitation…

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Conducting cardiac rehabilitation via telemedicine may be an effective alternative to conventional onsite programs in terms of risk reduction a small pilot study shows. The results for both the onsite and remote group of patients mirrored results ... Read more

EHR Incentive Program Off to a Muddy Start…

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(Editorial) – April 18 marked the beginning of registration for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program. It effectively launches a monumental effort to transform the U.S. healthcare system from a disjointed, ... Read more

First Study to Show Research Meaningful Use from EMRs…

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Data captured in electronic medical records (EMR) for routine clinical care as currently implemented is sufficient to conduct genome-wide association studies, according to the first study to look at EMR-based research. The study published today in ... Read more

Successful Uploads of DICOM Images Into PACS Cuts …

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Patients transferred from emergency departments to a central medical center in Boston had a significant 17 percent decrease in subsequent imaging exams when their images on CD were successfully uploaded to the medical center’s PACS, or picture ... Read more

U.S. Sticks to Complicated Road to Better Healthcare…

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The proposed regulation governing the creation of Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) was officially published in the US Federal Register on April 7. The Department of Health and Human Services released the 429-page proposed regulation for public ... Read more

First Use of Synchrotron Mammography Effective for …

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In the first clinical trial using synchrotron radiation mammography researchers were nearly as accurate as needle biopsy in identifying breast cancer or ruling it out in cases where digital mammography was inconclusive, researchers in Italy ... Read more

Improved MRI System May Make Therapy Available to More …

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Using a new MRI device, surgeons are able to perform deep brain stimulation therapy for Parkinson’s patients in half the time needed for conventional surgery. The device may make the procedure more widely available for patients with severe ... Read more

Could Proposed Medicare Plan Price Seniors Out of …

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How healthcare is paid for in the U.S. affects all health providers, and in some ways has a greater impact on radiology and imaging specialists, as the issue of unnecessary and high-cost tests has drawn a great deal of attention to these specialties ... Read more

Optimal Placement of Pacemaker Leads Using Speckle …

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Placing pacemaker leads in the optimal area of the left ventricle using computer-enhanced echocardiography imaging produced a 50 percent lower combined rate of all-cause death and hospitalizations compared to patients with conventional lead ... Read more

Imaging-Guided Catheter Valve Replacement Similar to …

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An echocardiographic and fluoroscopic-guided catheter-based procedure is equal to conventional open-heart surgery, a new study shows, at least in terms of survival for replacement of aortic heart valves in elderly high-risk patients. This is the ... Read more

Meaningful Use Criteria Shouldn’t Lose Sight of …

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While I haven’t been covering health IT issues for very long, it doesn’t take long to find out that one of the hottest topics in health IT today is Meaningful Use. Right near the top of the list of issues in any discussion of meaningful use is ... Read more

Interventional Radiology Treatment for Enlarged …

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A minimally invasive interventional radiology treatment showed equal effectiveness as the current gold standard surgery for benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, without the associated risks of sexual dysfunction, or incontinence, researchers ... Read more

New Drug and Ultrasound-guided Injection Shrinks …

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Combining a new drug target with an interventional radiology technique using ultrasound-guided injection of the drug directly into the tumor, reduced breast tumors in mice by as much as 90 percent and delayed metastasis, say researchers. Study ... Read more

Interventional Radiologists Ready for Launch into …

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The Society of Interventional Radiology kicked off its weeklong 36th Annual Scientific meeting today, at McCormack Place, in Chicago. The meeting runs to March 31, 2011, and ... Read more

Nanoparticles Make First Successful MRI-guided Drug …

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Researchers in Montreal say they have accomplished the first delivery of a therapeutic agent to a specified location in a liver using nanoparticles and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technology. In a proof-of-concept study, Pierre Pouponneau, a ... Read more

Low-Dose CT Angiography is as Safe and Accurate as …

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Low-dose coronary angiography matched the sensitivity of catheter-based angiography, and is a potentially valid alternative to the gold-standard for triaging symptomatic patients suspeed of coronary artery disease (CAD), researchers say. Led by ... Read more

PACS Replacement Study Shows Significant Market Up Tick…  

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A new industry study shows that 52 percent of the radiology picture archiving and communications systems (PACS) in use within hospitals today are more than five years old and 21 percent of U.S. Hospitals plan to replace their radiology PACS. The ... Read more

New MRI Technique Produces Better Artery Assessment…

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Non-radioaive elastin-specific MRI dye offers advantages over x-ray and angiography as well as intravascular ultrasound. A new, non-invasive magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technique can quantify coronary artery disease in patients before they ... Read more

Wednesday, 02 March 2011
The number of hospitals offering CT colonography, sometimes referred to as virtual colonoscopy, rose slightly between 2005 and 2008, despite lack of Medicare coverage, a new study shows. The researchers led by Dr. Megan McHugh, director of research at the Health Research and Education Trust, surveyed 3,980 nonfederal hospitals of all sizes across the U.S. about whether they offered computed tomography for diagnosing colorectal cancer. The 2008 survey showed that 669 ... READ MORE

Higher Volume Alone Doesn’t Mean Better Mammography…

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Performance more strongly linked to mix of screening and diagnostic radiology The old adage that practice makes perfect doesn’t quite tell the whole story, at least not in case of radiologists interpreting breast cancer mammograms say ... Read more

Sebelius Hails Extraordinary Progress In EHR …

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Calls on Health IT Professionals to advocate for continued progress Feb. 23, 2011 – The one area of U.S. healthcare reform that Democrats and Republicans agree on is that healthcare IT is critical to improving care, cutting paperwork, lowering ... Read more

2011 Survey Shows Big Gains for Informatics Nurses…

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Results announced at HIMSS 2011 conference When it comes to improving quality of care and process efficiency, it has long been recognized that nurse informaticists are key players in healthcare IT implementation. With the growing ... Read more

Healthcare IT Professionals Kick Off Their Biggest …

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More than 30,000 IT professionals to gather in Orlando for HIMSS11 The Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) 2011 Conference kicks off on Feb. 20th at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL. and promises to be the ... Read more

Calcium Scoring Adds Little Prognostic Value To Ct Angiography…

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Coronary artery calcium (CAC) scoring may no longer be needed for predicting major adverse cardiac events (MACEs) when a 64-section CT angiography is performed, researchers say. Led by Dr. Hyuk-Jae Chang, of the Division of Cardiology Yonsei University College of Medicine in Seoul, the researchers evaluated the prognostic value of CT angiography alone and with coronary artery calcium scoring for predicting major adverse cardiac events (MACEs) including cardiac death or ... Read more

Routine Preoperative MRI Boosts Tumor Detection…

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Routine MRI before surgery in women newly diagnosed with breast cancer turned up a significant number of undetected tumors, researchers say. Led by Dr. Robert Gutierrez, assistant professor in the Department of Radiology at the University of ... Read more

Ultrasound Elastography Should Be Included In Biopsy …

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Elastography imaging performed during breast ultrasound of suspicious breast lesions ought to be used to help determine which lumps need biopsy, Japanese researchers say. The researchers, led by Dr. Hiroko Satake, of Nagoya University School of ... Read more

CDS success may lie in implementation…

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Scope and method of implementation plays a critical role in successful implementation of a CDS systems. If you look at three studies published last week regarding the effectiveness of Clinical Decision Support you might question the wisdom of the ... Read more

CTA and MRA equally accurate for coronary imaging…

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First dire comparison of newer imaging modalities shows equal accuracy in diagnosing coronary artery stenosis. Newer MRI and -angiography proved nearly equal in identifying significant stenosis, and were equally accurate in predicting the need for ... Read more

CDS effective for reducing costs when targeted at …

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Using clinical decision support for ordering specific kinds of imaging studies results in substantial reductions in inappropriate use of advanced imaging tests a new study shows. Led by Dr. C. Craig Blackmore, a radiologist at Seattle’s Virginia ... Read more

New Mexico Software Launches Full-Function iPad App …

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It is not often a company executive has the chance to conduct a real-life test of his company’s products, but New Mexico Software CEO Richard Govatski did just that over this past holiday season. Having slipped getting into his hot tub he twisted ... Read more

Density of Mammographic Masses are a Significant …

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High-density masses shown on mammograms were more than three times as likely to be malignant as low-density masses, say researchers. Led by Dr. Ryan Woods, now a radiology resident at Johns Hopkins, researchers at the University of Wisconsin ... Read more