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American College of Radiology, Breast Imaging Center of Excellence

American College of Radiology, Computed Tomography (CT) Accredited Facility

American College of Radiology, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Accredited Facility

64 Slice CT Scanner (Computed Tomography)

Lowell General Hospital's new 64-channel scanner uses advanced technology to reconstruct those individual "slices" into a 3D image of the entire area scanned, giving a detailed a high-resolution image and providing our doctors with the tools they need to give you the best care possible.

This new scanner creates vivid, detailed images very quickly. It can scan a heart, brain or a pair of lungs in about five seconds. A scan of the entire body takes about 30 seconds.

Because of the lightning-fast speed, these images can be shared quickly with referring physicians and surgeons, allowing for immediate treatment planning. This is critical in trauma cases in the Emergency Department, where physicians may have to make life and death decisions within minutes.

CT -or "CAT scan" - combines x-rays with computer technology to record images of a patient's anatomy to help doctors rule out or confirm the presence of disease or injury. The patient lies on a table and is moved incrementally through a donut-shaped scanner while an x-ray beam is projected through cross sections of their anatomy and recorded on electronic detectors.

For comparison, in a conventional CT scanner, with between four to 16 detectors, this information is sent to a computer that produces a "slice", a cross-sectional, one-dimensional image.

The new scanner at LGH - with 64 detectors - uses advanced technology to reconstruct those individual "slices" into a 3D image of the entire area scanned, giving a detailed a high-resolution image. It is also used in CT angiography, allowing physicians to evaluate arterial systems in minute detail.

All CT scanners use x-rays; however, the new Brilliance scanner uses a significantly lower amount of x-ray energy than many of the other CT systems on the market. "While we need the critical anatomical information we get from a CT scan, we always want to limit the x-ray dose to the absolute minimum possible, especially for children," Berman said. "The new scanner features unique technology that ensures we get exceptional images without increasing the x-ray dose to the patient."

The 64-slice CT scanner is just the latest advancement in technology at Lowell General Hospital, which has offered comprehensive health care to the people of Greater Lowell for more than 100 years. The hospital's wide range of services include maternity and pediatric services in affiliation with Tufts Medical Center and Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center; The Cancer Center in affiliation with Dana-Farber/Partners CancerCare; and 24-hour emergency and trauma care, including a state-designated Primary Stroke Service and primary cardiac angioplasty.

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