CT evidence of acute ischemia either alone or in combination with chronic ischemia or microangiopathy present within 24 hours of a nondisabling stroke can help predict risk of recurrent stroke for up to 90 days, researchers reported. Patients with transient ischemic attacks (TIA) or nondisabling strokes who showed evidence of acute and chronic ischemia and microangiopathy had an eight-fold increase in risk for having another stroke over the next 3 months, lead researcher Jason K. Wasserman, MD, PhD, of Ottawa Hospital Health Research Institute, Ontario, and colleagues wrote in the American Heart Association journal Stroke, published online Dec. 4.
Lung cancer is often called a “silent killer,” and one-fourth of people with the disease show no symptoms when they are diagnosed. It’s often caught during chest X-rays or scans performed for other reasons. Last year, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommended annual CT scans for patients ages 55 to 74 with a smoking history equivalent to one pack a day for 30 years who still smoke or who have quit within 15 years.
According to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers concluded that overuse of cardiac stress testing with images has led to rising healthcare costs and unnecessary exposure to radiation. Cardiac stress testing with imaging has been the focus of debate in regards to rising healthcare costs and patient safety, and this report is believed to be the first comprehensive study of cardiac stress testing with imaging.
Thirty percent of nearly 40,000 women who will die from breast cancer in the next year could have been helped if they had received regular mammograms starting at age 40. A public service campaign called Mammography Saves Lives is encouraging women to find an accredited mammography center near them for regular screenings. According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 300,000 new cases of breast cancer will are diagnosed each year.
According to a clinical study conducted at 15 medical centers, and published in the New England Journal of Medicine, CT scans are no better than the less-often-used utltrasound exams when diagnosing kidney stones. Unlike ultrasound, CT exposes patients to significant amounts of radiation. While CT is a preferred choice in the emergency room, the ultrasound is a better place to start the initial diagnostic imaging test.
The medical imaging technology industry supports an estimated 12,124 jobs in the state of Washington and generates approximately $3.1 billion in total economic activity according to a report commissioned by the Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance. This activity creates an additional 5,169 jobs elsewhere in the U.S.
It can take several months to measure how effective treatment is for Cystic Fibrosis, the early-fatal lung disease, but now a new imaging method allows live viewing to monitor treatment. “Because we will be able to see how effectively treatments are working straight away, we’ll be able to develop new treatments a lot more quickly, and help better treat people with cystic fibrosis,” said lead researcher, Dr Morgan.
Pelvic x-rays for children who have suffered blunt force trauma are do not accurately identify all cases of pelvic fractures or dislocations. A study published online in Annals of Emergency Medicine casts doubt on a practice that has been recommended by the Advanced Trauma Life Support Program (ATLS). “Because of concerns about lifetime exposure to radiation in children, appropriate use of radiography is important. We just could not find enough accuracy or utility to justify the pelvic x-ray for most of these children,” said lead study author Maria Kwok, MD, MPH, of Columbia University Medical Center in New York, N.Y.
The American Society for Radiation Oncology and the American Association of Physicists in Medicine have announced the launch of a national initiative to facilitate safer and higher-quality radiation oncology care. The secure reporting system called RO-ILS: Radiation Oncology Incident Learning System, will provide data to educate the radiation oncology community about practice risks and how to improve safety and patient care.
The Mayo Clinic is leading a collaborative effort to ensure a national protocol is put into action to ensure that children receive the right exam, ordered the right way with the right radiation dose. A commentary, published online in the Journal of Patient Safety, calls for the American College of Radiology, the Joint Commission, the Intersociety Accreditation Commission, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to require three safety practices for accreditation of all American hospitals and advanced diagnostic imaging facilities.