Diagnostic imaging technologies like X-rays and MRI scans provide detailed information that enables your medical team to make a swift and accurate diagnosis. The highly experienced health care team at Lagniappe Medical Clinic uses a range of state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging tools to help them take the best possible care of you. With branches at convenient locations in Columbia, Blythewood, and West Columbia, there is an ideal Lagniappe Medical Clinic near every resident of this region of South Carolina. Call the clinic nearest you today to schedule an appointment, or use the online tool.
Medical imaging is the technology that allows your doctor to view detailed pictures of the internal structures of your body.
Imaging is a way of seeing what’s going on in your organs, bones, blood, and other tissues without having to use any invasive methods, helping to diagnose what’s causing symptoms and, in some cases, assisting with treatment.
The original imaging technique is the X-ray, and it’s still one of the main diagnostic tools used in modern medicine. However, there are several other imaging technologies that have different functions so your Lagniappe Medical Clinic doctor can choose the most appropriate technique for your condition. The main imaging tools currently in use are:
X-ray beams pass through your body, which either absorbs or scatters them. The pattern this process creates transmits to a computer, which then records the image. Radiography, or what you would think of as a standard X-ray, produces clear images of bones, but X-rays are also useful for other purposes, such as diagnosing arthritis and identifying dental decay.
Fluoroscopy is a continuous X-ray display that allows your doctor to see how a special dye travels around your body. It’s also useful for helping to guide the placement of devices such as stents.
CT, or computed tomography, is a series of multiple X-rays that, when reconstructed by a computer, show detailed cross-sections of your organs.
Ultrasound uses sound at very high frequencies that bounce off the internal organs to create an image. Ultrasound images show movement and blood flow and are ideal for checking the health of a baby in the uterus as there’s no ionizing radiation. Ultrasound is also a diagnostic tool for problems affecting the internal organs, including kidneys, uterus, and spleen.
MRI uses radiofrequency energy and magnetic fields to create images of your internal organs and tissues. Scans of the brain often utilize this type of imaging.
Modern imaging technologies are very safe, and shouldn’t present a threat to health when used infrequently. There is a small risk of radiographic imaging techniques such as X-rays, CT scans, and fluoroscopy causing cancer or cataracts when a patient is older because these techniques use radiation to create the image.
However, the benefits of using these diagnostic imaging tools to treat a patient with an existing health need far outweigh the slight risk involved. Modern radiography technologies use the minimum quantities of radiation, and shielding helps protect patients from risk.
If you are a woman of child-bearing age and may be pregnant, there is a risk of harm from X-rays to the fetus. If there’s any possibility you could be pregnant, it’s best not to have radiography, but ultrasound is one of the safest diagnostic techniques and is suitable for pregnant women.
Using diagnostic imaging helps the team at Lagniappe Medical Clinic to make a timely and accurate diagnosis that ensures you receive the best possible care in the shortest possible time. If you have any health problems, find out what’s causing them and start feeling better by making an appointment at the clinic, or book using the online tool.