Procedures

Radiological Imaging

Colorado Springs Radiology and Imaging Procedures: The various types of radiological procedures may be grouped by the means in which their images are produced: transmission imaging, reflection imaging, or emission imaging.

  • transmission imaging – X-rays, computed tomography (CT) scans, and fluoroscopy are radiological examinations whose images are produced by transmission. In transmission imaging, a beam of high-energy photons is produced and passed through the body structure being examined. The beam passes very quickly through less dense types of tissue such as watery secretions, blood, and fat, leaving a darkened area on the x-ray film. Muscle and connective tissues (ligaments, tendons, and cartilage) appear gray. Bones will appear white.
  • reflection imaging – Reflection imaging refers to the type of imaging produced by sending high-frequency sounds to the body part or organ being studied. These sound waves “bounce” off of the various types of body tissues and structures at varying speeds, depending on the density of the tissues present. The bounced sound waves are sent to a computer that analyzes the sound waves and produces a visual image of the body part or structure. Ultrasound is an example of reflection imaging.
  • emission imaging – Emission imaging occurs when tiny, nuclear particles or magnetic energy are detected by a scanner and analyzed by computer to produce an image of the body structure or organ being examined. Nuclear medicine studies use emission of nuclear particles from nuclear substances introduced into the body specifically for the examination. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies, for example, are obtained by using a large magnet to cause changes in the body tissue in order to detect magnetic energy in the body part or structure being examined.

At RIC Radiology, we perform the following radiologic imaging procedures:

» More about: CT Scans
» More about: MRI
» More about: X-ray
» More about: Nuclear Medicine/PET
» More about: Fluoroscopy
» More about: Ultrasound
» More about: Mammography
» More about: Minimally Invasive Therapy


Glossary of Terms

Below are terms relating to radiology:

A

angioplasty – the use of a small balloon on the tip of a catheter inserted into a blood vessel to open up an area of blockage inside the vessel.

arteriogram (Also called an angiogram) – an x-ray of the arteries and veins to detect blockage or narrowing of the vessels.

B

barium – a metallic chemical (chalky liquid) used to coat the inside of the organs so that they will show up on an x-ray.

barium x-rays – a type of diagnostic x-ray in which barium is used to diagnose abnormalities of the digestive tract. Barium enema, barium small-bowel enema, and barium swallow are types of barium x-rays.

biopsy – a procedure in which tissue samples are removed (with a needle or during surgery) from the body for examination under a microscope; to determine if cancer or other abnormal cells are present.

brachytherapy – a type of radiation treatment in which the radioactive substance is placed inside the patient as close as possible to the area being treated.

C

computed tomography scan (Also called a CT or CAT scan) – a diagnostic imaging procedure that uses a combination of x-rays and computer technology to produce cross-sectional images (often called slices), both horizontally and vertically, of the body. A CT scan shows detailed images of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat, and organs. CT scans are more detailed than general x-rays.

D

diagnostic radiology – the use of various radiology techniques, mostly noninvasive, to diagnose an array of medical conditions. Diagnostic radiology includes the use of x-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, and ultrasound.

E

embolization – the insertion of a substance through a catheter into a blood vessel to stop hemorrhaging, or excessive bleeding.

external beam therapy – a type of therapeutic radiation treatment that is delivered externally from a machine directed to the cancer inside the patient.

F

fluoroscopy – a study of moving body structures, similar to an x-ray “movie.” A continuous x-ray beam is passed through the body part being examined, and is transmitted to a TV-like monitor so that the body part and its motion can be seen in detail.

G

gamma camera – a device used in nuclear medicine to scan patients who have been injected with small amounts of radioactive materials.

Gamma Knife – a type of radiosurgery that uses gamma rays to treat brain cancer.

gastrostomy tubes – a gastrostomy tube (feeding tube) is inserted into the stomach if the patient is unable to take food by mouth.

H

I

interventional radiology – a area of specialty within the field of radiology which uses various radiology techniques (such as x-ray, CT scans, MRI scans, and ultrasounds) to place wires, tubes, or other instruments inside a patient to diagnose or treat an array of conditions.

intravascular ultrasound – the use of ultrasound inside a blood vessel to better visualize the interior of the vessel in order to detect problems inside the blood vessel.

intravenous pyelogram (IVP) – a series of x-rays of the kidney, ureters, and bladder with the injection of a contrast dye into the vein – to detect tumors, abnormalities, kidney stones, or any obstructions, and to assess renal blood flow.

J

K

L

Linear accelerator (LINAC) – a device used to create high-energy x-rays for radiosurgery treatment.

M

magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – a diagnostic procedure that uses a combination of large magnets, radiofrequencies, and a computer to produce detailed images of organs and structures within the body.

mammogram – an x-ray of the breast used to detect and diagnose breast disease.

N

needle biopsy – a small needle is inserted into the abnormal area in almost any part of the body, guided by imaging techniques, to obtain a tissue biopsy. This type of biopsy can provide a diagnosis without surgical intervention. An example of this procedure is called the needle breast biopsy.

nuclear medicine – a specialized area of radiology that uses very small amounts of radioactive substances to examine organ function and structure.

O

P

positron emission tomography (PET) – in nuclear medicine, a procedure that measures the metabolic activity of cells.

proton beam therapy – a type of radiation therapy used to treat cancer and other lesions.

Q

R

radiologist – a physician specializing in the medical field of radiology.

radiopharmaceutical (Also called a tracer or radionuclide.) – basic radioactively-tagged compound necessary to produce a nuclear medicine image.

radiosurgery – a type of therapeutic radiology treatment that uses very focused beams of radiation to treat cancer and other lesions in a one-session treatment.

S

stent – a tiny, expandable coil that is placed inside a blood vessel at the site of a blockage. The stent is expanded to open up the blockage.

T

therapeutic radiology – the treatment of cancer and other diseases with radiation.

tomography – from the Greek words “to cut or section” (tomos) and “to write” (graphein), in nuclear medicine, it is a method of separating interference from the area of interest by imaging a cut section of the object.

U

ultrafast CT (computed tomography) scan – a type of radiology diagnostic procedure in which an x-ray beam moves in a circle around the body. This allows many different views of the same organ or structure, and provides much greater detail. The x-ray information is sent to a computer that interprets the x-ray data and displays it in 2-dimensional form on a monitor.

ultrasound – a diagnostic technique which uses high-frequency sound waves to create an image of the internal organs.

V

W

X

x-ray – a diagnostic test which uses invisible electromagnetic energy beams to produce images of internal tissues, bones, and organs onto film.

Y

Z


Scheduling

To schedule an appointment for your Colorado Springs radiology and imaging procedure, please contact us at a location that’s convenient for you. We accept most insurances including Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare. We also accept cash and credit card payment.

Memorial Hospital Central
1400 E Boulder St
Colorado Springs, CO 80909
Scheduling: 719-365-5240
» Map & directions

Memorial Hospital North
4050 Briargate Parkway
Colorado Springs, CO 80920
Scheduling: 719-365-5240
» Map & directions

Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group
1625 Medical Center Point, Ste. 150
Colorado Springs, CO 80907
Scheduling: 719-867-7315
» Map & directions

Prowers Medical Center
401 Kendall Dr.
Lamar, CO 81052
Scheduling: 719-336-6762
» Map & directions

San Luis Valley Regional Medical Center
601 Blanca Ave.
Alamosa, CO 81101
719-587-1231
» Map & directions


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