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Preparing for your exam at Rose Radiology.

General things for you to consider in any diagnostic imaging suite. Here’s what you can do to make your experience a better one:

  • Avoid wearing lots of cosmetics; perfumes, hair sprays, body piercings and jewelry, for these may interfere with getting a quality exam.
  • Keep your valuables at home. You shouldn’t have them on your mind while you are having your exam.
  • If you are anxious, bring a friend or loved one. They may not be able to be with you during your exam, but just knowing that they are close by in the lobby area will help tremendously.
  • If you are requesting sedation to ease your fears, you need to have a person with you that can drive you to and from our center.
  • If you have questions, please ask. We want your experience to be a beneficial and comfortable one. Our technologists and staff are more than willing to help you.
  • If you are able to eat before your exam, avoid foods and beverages that may make you anxious such as caffeinated beverages, high sugar foods, alcohol, and high-energy bars.

CT or ‘CAT’ scans
MRI scans
Ultrasounds
Mammograms
DEXA
Arthrogram
Epidural Steroid Injections (ESI’s)
Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)
Discogram
CT Myelogram

CT or ‘CAT’ scans

Key things to remember if you are having a CT scan:

  • If you need a CT injection, make sure you have had a BUN and creatinine blood test before your appointment date (minimum 48 hours).
  • Do not eat 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • You can take prescribed medications with water 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • If you need a CT injection, do you have kidney disease? Let the Rose Radiology staff know, for you need blood work a minimum of 48 hours before the CT injection.
  • If you are 65 years or older, and/or diabetic, you need to have blood work a minimum of 48 hours before the CT injection.

CT, which stands for Computed Tomography, is an advance X-ray technology that uses computers to create high-resolution, detailed images of the body. Exam times can be a few minutes to about 20 minutes, depending on the test your doctor has ordered with most CT exams taking about 10-15 minutes.

Arrive fifteen minutes before your scheduled appointment time. It is important to not eat 4 hours before your test; however, if you are on prescribed medications, and you must take our medications within the 4 hours before your test, you may take the medications with water. If your CT scan is of the abdomen or pelvis, you may be required to drink a substance called barium prior to your CT scan. The technologist will provide this barium drink to you on the same day of the exam, or you may want to stop by the Rose Radiology center the day before your exam to take the barium drink home with you so you can begin to drink as directed.

Some CT scans require an injection in a vein in your arm. Your doctor will have already sent you to a laboratory to have some blood tests performed if you are to have this CT injection. The two blood specimen values we like to have before your CT are a B.U.N. and a creatinine, for these test indicate how well your kidneys are functioning. If you have kidney disease of any kind, make sure you notify the front office staff. It is important that you answer questions thoroughly and completely on all forms given to you regarding your medical history.

If you have not had a blood test, let us know as soon as possible, a day or two, before your CT scan appointment. If you are to have a CT with an injection, the technologist will start a small intravenous (IV) prior to your scan once you have entered the CT suite. Once the scan is completed, and the IV is removed, your technologist will give you instructions and you can resume your normal activities such as driving your car and resuming your normal diet within the guidelines as prescribed to you by your doctor.

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MRI scans

Key things to remember if you are having a MRI scan:

  • Your safety! Pacemakers and other devices may be damaged if in the MRI scanner.
  • Keep meals ‘lite’ and avoid caffeinated beverages before your appointment.
  • Take your medications as usual.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • If you need a MRI injection, do you have kidney disease? Let the Rose Radiology staff know, for you need blood work a minimum of 48 hours before the MRI injection.
  • If you are 65 years or older, and/or diabetic, you need to have blood work a minimum of 48 hours before the MRI injection.
  • Relax and hold still during your exam as best as you can.

MRI, or ‘Magnetic Resonance Imaging’, is an advanced imaging technology that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to create detailed images of the tissues (brain, muscles, cartilages, etc.) of the body without the use of X-rays. Exam times can be from 20 minutes to about 45 minutes, depending on the test your doctor has ordered. Some specialized MRI’s can take 50 minutes, but the majority of MRI exams are 20 to 30 minutes.

Because of the great strength of the magnetic field, it is important for each patient to understand that certain medically implanted devices, such as cardiac pacemakers (PPM), automatic internal cardiac defibrillators (AICD), and other various other devices in patients may prohibit you from having an MRI. This is for your safety. If you do have any devices implanted in your body, please notify the front office staff what the device is. Also, you will be given a form that lists many potential devices and medical history questions that may relate to you. It is important that you answer these questions thoroughly and completely.

Arrive fifteen minutes before your scheduled appointment time. Keep meals ‘lite’ before your MRI. We suggest not eating for 1 hour before your exam. Avoid caffeinated beverages a few hours before your exam. If you are on prescribed medications, and you must take your medications any time before your MRI exam, you may take your prescribed medications as needed. Prior to your MRI scan a technologist may ask you to remove jewelry and clothing that is not suitable for the MRI scanner. We have lockers for your possessions and gowns for your comfort and convenience. During the MRI scan, it is important to remain very still and relaxed. This will make your exam go faster, for if you are moving about while in the scanner the technologist may have to retake whole series of pictures if they are blurry from your movements. Do your best to hold still while being scanned.

Some MRI scans require an injection in a vein in your arm with a very small ‘pediatric’ size needle for your comfort. If you have a history of kidney disease there are two blood specimen values we like to have before your MRI and they are a B.U.N. and a creatinine, for these test indicate how well your kidneys are functioning. If you have kidney disease of any kind, make sure you notify the front office staff. It is important that you answer questions thoroughly and completely on all forms given to you regarding your medical history. If you need a MRI injection, the technologist will perform this injection in the middle or end of the timeframe of the exam. Once the scan is completed, your technologist will give you instructions and you can resume your normal activities such as driving your car and resuming your normal diet within the guidelines as prescribed to you by your doctor.

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Ultrasounds

Key things to remember if you are having an Ultrasound examination:

  • Abdominal and retroperitoneal exams: don’t eat 4-6 hours before your appointment.
  • Bladder and pelvic exams: drink a minimum of 30 ounces of water starting 1 hour before your appointment time.
  • Bladder and pelvic exams: avoid urinating 1 hour before your appointment time.
  • Take your medications as usual, with small sips of water.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.

Ultrasound is a critical and important diagnostic imaging tool used to diagnosis various illnesses and conditions by using ultrasound waves. It is used to image many major organs and soft tissues of the torso and pelvis, the flow of blood throughout the body, and babies as they are developing in their mother womb. Ultrasound exams take about 10 minutes. If you are having multiple ultrasounds it may take about up to 30 minutes to complete the exams.

Arrive fifteen minutes before your scheduled appointment time. If you are having any of the following: abdominal, pelvic and retroperitoneal (organs behind the abdomen), it is important that you do not eat 4 to 6 hours before your exam. If you need to take prescribed medications before your exam, do so with very small sips of water. Ultrasounds of the bladder and pelvis require that you drink at least 30 ounces of water 1 hour prior to your appointment, and avoid urinating 1 hour prior to your appointment as well. This helps to delineate the bladder from other organs in your body while the technologist is scanning.

During the exam the technologist will use a device called a transducer to take the pictures. These devices come in various shapes and designs to maximize the frequency of the ultrasound waves. A very specialized ultrasound gel is applied to the end of the transducer, and this too optimizes the ultrasound signal. They hold the device in one hand, placing the device on the body part being examined, moving it around to get the best angle to demonstrate the organ or anatomical structures and use their other hand to take the pictures.

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Mammograms

Key things to remember if you are having a Mammogram examination:

  • Eat or drink as you normally would.
  • Avoid wearing powders, perfumes, deodorant or antiperspirants.
  • If you have had a previous mammogram at another facility, please bring the films or reports.
  • Take your medications as usual.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • Mammography is an extremely important tool in the fight for breast cancer. Using ‘soft’ X-rays, the various densities of tissues within the breast are seen on the mammography films so that the radiologist can make a diagnosis or recommend additional imaging to determine if cancer is present. Eat or drink as you normally do. No special preps are necessary but in order to take high quality images of the breast and chest area please avoid wearing powders, perfumes, deodorant or antiperspirants, for these products may inhibit the clarity of the mammogram. If you have had a previous mammogram at a facility other than Rose Radiology, please bring your films and/or reports with you.

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DEXA

Key things to remember if you are having a Dexa examination:

  • Keep meals ‘lite’ and avoid caffeinated beverages before your appointment.
  • Take your medications as usual.
  • Wear comfortable clothing without metal belts, buttons or zippers.
  • If you had a CT or X-ray exam that required an IV injection or drinking barium, have your Dexa 14 days after the CT or X-ray exam was performed.
  • If you had a nuclear medicine study, have your Dexa 14 days after the nuclear medicine exam was performed.

This exam uses X-rays to measure the density of you bones. Bone density is important, especially in women as they get older, for low bone density can signal the beginnings of Osteoporosis. It is a simple and effective diagnostic tool. You should avoid taking calcium supplements for 48 hours prior to your Dexa exam. Make sure that you wear loose, comfortable clothing, and avoid clothes that have metal belts, zippers, or buttons. If you have had a CT or X-ray study that required you to drink ‘barium’, or get a CT scan or X-ray exam that required an injection in your vein or you had a nuclear medicine study, wait 14 days to have your Dexa exam performed.

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Arthrogram

Key things to remember if you are having an Arthrogram examination:

  • Keep meals ‘lite’ and avoid caffeinated beverages before your appointment.
  • Take your medications as usual.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • Avoid your ‘blood thinners’ for one week prior to your ESI, but make sure that you consult with your doctor that prescribe your ‘blood thinners’ before you stop taking these drugs.

This is a procedure that requires the radiologist to inject a local anesthetic and a special imaging solution into the joint (shoulder, wrist, etc.) so that injuries are diagnosed. Arthrograms can be performed by MRI, CT and X-ray scanners, so follow the additional instructions for these modalities listed above.

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Epidural Steroid Injections (ESI’s)

  • Don’t eat 4 hours before your appointment.
  • You can take prescribed medications with water 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • Have a driver take you to and from your ESI appointment.
  • Avoid your ‘blood thinners’ for one week prior to your ESI, but make sure that you consult with your doctor that prescribe your ‘blood thinners’ before you stop taking these drugs.

This is an interventional procedure that is used to treat spinal pain associated with trauma or degenerative diseases. This is a procedure that requires the radiologist to inject a local anesthetic and a steroid near a nerve coming off of the spinal cord to releave pain. The procedure is done under fluoroscopy, an X-ray machine used to see images in motion. It is important to bring any and all radiology films (MRI’s, CT’s, etc.) and radiologist reports of these films, if the radiology exams were not performed at Rose Radiology. If you are on ‘blood thinners’, like Coumadin, Plavix or even aspirin, you should avoid these drugs for one week prior to your ESI, but please consult your doctor that prescribed these drugs for you before you stop taking your ‘blood thinner’. If your doctor does not want you off your ‘blood thinners’ notify the staff at Rose Radiology immediately. Don’t wait until the day of your appointment, for we may have to reschedule your ESI. Make sure you have a friend to drive you to and from Rose Radiology, for you should avoid driving for the rest of the day after the procedure. You will have to lie on your stomach for a brief time, so make sure you are as comfortable as possible at the beginning of your procedure.

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Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP)

Key things to remember if you are having an IVP examination:

  • Make sure you have had a BUN and creatinine blood test before your appointment date (minimum 48 hours).
  • Don’t eat 4 hours before your appointment.
  • You can take prescribed medications with water 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • Do you have kidney disease? Let the Rose Radiology staff know, for you need blood work a minimum of 48 hours before the IVP.
  • If you are 65 years or older, and/or diabetic, you need to have blood work a minimum of 48 hours before the IVP.

Is an X-ray exam that is used to diagnose kidney disease. The technologist will take a series of timed X-rays after injecting a contrasting solution in your arm. These images are important for diagnosing many diseases of the kidneys, ureter and bladder. We use the same type of injection as in a CT exam, so the same rules apply to you.

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Discogram

Key things to remember if you are having a Discogram examination:

  • Don’t eat 4 hours before your appointment.
  • You can take prescribed medications with water 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • Have a driver take you to and from your Discogram appointment.
  • Avoid your ‘blood thinners’ for one week prior to your ESI, but make sure that you consult with your doctor that prescribe your ‘blood thinners’ before you stop taking these drugs.
  • Avoid any activity for the rest of the day.

This procedure is similar to the ESI, but is not therapeutic. This is a procedure that is used to diagnose injury to the ‘discs’ in your back. This is a procedure that requires the radiologist to inject a local anesthetic and a special imaging solution into the ‘discs’ in your back. The procedure is done under fluoroscopy, an X-ray machine used to see images in motion. It is important to bring any and all radiology films (MRI’s, CT’s, etc.) and radiologist reports of these films, if the radiology exams were not performed at Rose Radiology. You will have to lie on your stomach, so make sure you are as comfortable as possible at the beginning of your procedure. When the procedure is finished, you will have to remain still for about 30-45 minutes, and avoid any activity for the rest of the day. Make sure you have a friend to drive you to and from Rose Radiology, for you should avoid driving for the rest of the day after the procedure.

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CT Myelogram

Key things to remember if you are having a Myelogram examination:

  • Don’t eat 4 hours before your appointment.
  • You can take prescribed medications with water 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
  • Have a driver take you to and from your Myelogram appointment.
  • Plan to be at the facility for approximately FIVE HOURS after your injection. We suggest bringing a bag lunch and reading material to help ensure your comfort.
  • Avoid your ‘blood thinners’ for one week prior to your ESI, but make sure that you consult with your doctor that prescribe your ‘blood thinners’ before you stop taking these drugs.
  • Avoid any activity for the rest of the day.

This procedure is similar to the Discogram, but is used to diagnose injury and degenerative diseases of the spinal canal. This is a procedure that requires the radiologist to inject a local anesthetic and a special imaging solution into the spinal canal of your back. The procedure may be done under fluoroscopy or in the CT scanner room. It is important to bring any and all radiology films (MRI’s, CT’s, etc.) and radiologist reports of these films of the spine, if the radiology exams were not performed at Rose Radiology. You will have to lie on your stomach, so make sure you are as comfortable as possible at the beginning of your procedure. When the procedure is finished, you will have to remain still for about 5 hours, and avoid any activity for the rest of the day. Make sure you have a friend to drive you to and from Rose Radiology, for you should avoid driving for the rest of the day after the procedure.

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