PROCEDURES

A list of all our Departments

BREAST DENSITY

It is Carolina Radiology’s policy to inform patients whose mammograms show that they have dense breast tissue. This is required by law in South Carolina and many other states. Patients with dense breasts may be at somewhat higher risk of developing breast cancer. Dense breast tissue also makes it more difficult for doctors to spot possibly cancerous tissue on a mammogram.

Dense breast tissue is not an abnormality. Depending on age and physiological characteristics, approximately 40 to 60 percent of women have dense breast tissue during at least part of their lives. Every patient who receives a notification with her mammogram results that she has dense breasts should have a conversation with her primary care physician or gynecologist about whether additional screenings, such as 3D mammography, breast MRI, or breast ultrasound, may be warranted.

COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHY (CT )

Computed tomography (CT) uses X-rays and computerized image processing technology to create highly-detailed images of organs and tissues inside the body. The exam procedures are often called CT scans or CAT scans, with CAT standing for computerized axial tomography. The images from CT scans are usually divided into sections, called “image slices,” that allow doctors to examine organs and tissues at different depths for signs of disease, abnormality, or injury.

Doctors order CT scans for a variety of reasons, such as testing for signs of disease in the heart and blood vessels, screening for cancer, diagnosing cancer or tumors, diagnosing disorders of the internal organs, planning cancer treatment, or diagnosing neurological diseases and conditions. CT scans are frequently used for studies of the head, chest, abdomen, or spine.

Follow the links below to learn more about several specialized CT scans:

COMPREHENSIVE MRI EXPERTISE AND EXPERIENCE

MRI is an imaging exam that uses magnetic fields, radio waves, and computerized image processing to give doctors highly detailed views of organs, tissues, and blood vessels inside the body. These exams, which use no ionizing radiation, can be used for a wide range of diagnostic purposes involving all areas of anatomy, including, but not limited to, the heart, blood vessels, brain, spine, joints, bones, and internal organs.

Diagnostic applications include:

  • Detecting cancer or tumors
  • Looking for signs of heart disease
  • Diagnosing disorders or abnormalities of the internal organs
  • Evaluating injuries or conditions of the bones and joints
  • Detecting neurological disorders

INTERVENTIONAL & VASCULAR

Today, it’s commonplace to find radiologists not only in the reading room, but in the operating room—applying advanced technology, training, and expertise to patient care. Enhanced with the precision of image guidance, procedures that once required major surgery are now performed by radiologists using precise, minimally-invasive techniques on an outpatient basis. This makes for faster procedure and recovery time, minimizes patient discomfort and, in most cases, eliminates the need for a hospital stay.

Carolina Radiology works closely with the hospitals and other medical institutions we serve to build leading interventional radiology programs. This ensures that patients have access to quality care that leads to precise diagnostic insights, support for treatment planning, and less-disruptive paths to relief from the effects of illness, injury, and disease.

INTERVENTIONAL SUBSPECIALTIES AND PROCEDURES PERFORMED BY CAROLINA RADIOLOGY PHYSICIANS

A key strength of Carolina Radiology is our ability to tailor the expertise of our team to the specific needs of our partner sites. Our interventional radiologists provide the following services:

  • Interventional angiography, vascular, and drainage procedures—less-invasive methods of diagnosing or treating disorders of, or facilitating frequent access, to the blood vessels. Interventional angiography and vascular procedures are performed for a wide range of purposes, including:
    • Brain attack—imaging blood vessels in or leading to the brain to confirm or rule out, assess, or treat a stroke
    • Stroke prevention—restoring blood flow or repairing weak areas of blood when abnormalities that increase stroke risk have been found
    • Abdominal aortic aneurysm treatment—repairing the abdominal aorta to reduce risk of potentially life-threatening internal bleeding
    • Vascular access—installing ports for patients whose veins need to be accessed frequently for injections, intravenous treatments, or dialysis
    • Drainage procedures—installing tubes to drain excess fluid from organs and body cavities in patients undergoing treatment for cancer or other disorders
  • Interventional neuroradiology—a radiology subspecialty focused on minimally invasive diagnostic and treatment procedures for disorders and injuries of the head, neck, and spine
  • Pain management—minimally-invasive procedures designed to relieve pain, including image-guided joint injections, nerve blocks, and spine surgeries

Procedures performed by our interventional radiologists include:

  • Arterial atherectomy
  • Ultrasound-assisted lysis of pulmonary embolism
  • DVT pharmaco-mechanical thrombolysis
  • Uterine artery embolization
  • Gonadal vein embolization
  • Arm ports
  • Vertebroplasty
  • Port lysis
  • Tunneled chest and abdominal drainage catheters
  • Celiac axis blocks
  • Etoh cyst ablation
  • Supra-aortic vessel origin stenting
  • Brain tumor embolization (predominantly meningiomas)
  • Epistaxis treatment
  • Consultative services and treatment for cervical and cerebral vascular trauma

NEUROINTERVENTIONAL RADIOLOGY

Neurointerventional surgery is a relatively new subspecialty of radiology that offers minimally invasive alternatives to traditional open surgical procedures. Physicians who perform these procedures are called neurointerventionalists. By harnessing the power of medical imaging to see inside the body in real time, neurointerventionalists are able to treat a variety of abnormalities of the brain, head, neck, and spine with a faster recovery time, minimal patient discomfort, and a reduced hospital stay.

NEUROINTERVENTIONAL PROCEDURES PERFORMED BY CAROLINA RADIOLOGY PHYSICIANS

A key strength of Carolina Radiology is our ability to tailor the expertise of our team to the specific needs of patients, referring physicians, and partner sites. Our neurointerventionalists are trained and experienced in some of the most advanced procedures that modern medicine has to offer.

If you are a patient, the descriptions of the highly specific neurointerventional procedures listed below may include terminology that is unfamiliar to you. Our subspecialty physicians can work with you or your doctor to ensure that you fully understand your diagnostic or treatment procedure, know how to prepare for it, and know what to expect.

  • Diagnostic Services – diagnosis of neurovascular disorders using high definition real-time/time-resolved imaging with or without provocative maneuvers.
  • Acute Stroke Therapy (Mechanical Thrombectomy) – using cutting-edge technology to remove emboli from the intra-cranial or extra-cranial circulation (techniques include suction embolectomy, stent-retrieval devices, and/or balloon angioplasty and stenting) and restore blood flow to the brain.
  • Aneurysm Treatment – full angiographic evaluation of aneurysms, followed by coordination with a multi-specialty team to determine the most appropriate course of treatment. In most cases, the aneurysm can then be treated with cutting-edge technology (including coils, stents, balloons, and flow diversion) and novel, minimally invasive techniques.
  • Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) Diagnosis and Treatment – angiographic grading of an AVM, followed by coordination with a multi-specialty team to determine the most appropriate course of treatment.
  • Dural Arteriovenous Fistula Diagnosis and Treatment – minimally invasive techniques using angiography to diagnose and treat dural AVFs.
  • Epistaxis Embolization – temporary embolization to prevent further bleeding for uncontrolled posterior nosebleeds.
  • Spinal Arteriovenous Malformations – angiography diagnosis of spinal AVMs, followed by coordination with a multispecialty team to determine the most appropriate course of treatment.
  • Pseudotumor Evaluation and Stenting – recent literature suggests that bilateral transverse sinus stenoses can contribute to elevated intracranial pressure. Neurointerventionalists use angiography and venography to identify and evaluate these stenoses. In carefully selected patients, transverse venous sinus stenting can be an alternative to medical therapy or shunting.
  • Tumor Embolization – using angiography to identify the blood supply to a tumor and embolize the tumor prior to surgery to improve visualization and provide better outcomes with decreased risk to the patient.
  • Vertebral Augmentation – fluoroscopically guided vertebral augmentation (vertebroplasty) for the treatment of osteoporotic spine fractures in appropriately selected patients.

NUCLEAR MEDICINE

Nuclear medicine imaging uses small amounts of radioactive materials called radiotracers that are typically injected into the bloodstream, inhaled or swallowed. The radiotracer travels through the area being examined and gives off energy in the form of gamma rays which are detected by a special camera and a computer to create images of the inside of your body. Nuclear medicine imaging provides unique information that often cannot be obtained using other imaging procedures and offers the potential to identify disease in its earliest stages.

Scans are used to diagnose many medical conditions and diseases. Some of the more common tests include the following:

  • Renal scans. These are used to examine the kidneys and to find any abnormalities. These include abnormal function or obstruction of the renal blood flow.
  • Thyroid scans. These are used to evaluate thyroid function or to better evaluate a thyroid nodule or mass.
  • Bone scans. These are used to evaluate any degenerative and/or arthritic changes in the joints, to find bone diseases and tumors, and/or to determine the cause of bone pain or inflammation.
  • Gallium scans. These are used to diagnose active infectious and/or inflammatory diseases, tumors, and abscesses.
  • Heart scans. These are used to identify abnormal blood flow to the heart, to determine the extent of the damage of the heart muscle after a heart attack, and/or to measure heart function.
  • Brain scans. These are used to investigate problems within the brain and/or in the blood circulation to the brain.
  • Breast scans. These are often used in conjunction with mammograms to locate cancerous tissue in the breast.

EXPERTISE & PROCEDURES

One of the key strengths of Carolina Radiology is the depth and breadth of our subspecialty capabilities.

COMMITTED TO QUALITY CARE AND SERVICE

Our radiology centers are fully-accredited meaning they are among the best imaging centers in the country. In order to earn these accreditations, we have had to prove a consistent history of high-quality imaging tests and services. When you come to Carolina Radiology, you are trusting the experts. We will take care of your imaging needs with the highest level of skill and care available in South Carolina.

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