New Can­cer Di­ag­nos­tic Tool at North Coun­try Hospi­tal

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS BRIEFS - New­port, VT

As­the Baby Boom gen­er­a­tion ages, the num­ber of can­cer cases and peo­ple di­ag­nosed with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of de­men­tia, are on the rise. North Coun­try Hospi­tal has a new med­i­cal de­vice which will help di­ag­nose and track th­ese and other dis­eases.

The new de­vice is a mo­bile Positron Emis­sion To­mog­ra­phy Scan (PET-CT) that will visit North Coun­try ev­ery other Satur­day.

“This is an im­por­tant new ser­vice for the area,” Brian Bidwell

said. “Un­til now pa­tients have had to leave the area for this ser­vice… it’s big city tech­nol­ogy in a small ru­ral town. Now pa­tients don’t have to drive 2 hours for state-of-the-art ser­vices.”

Brian is the Di­rec­tor of Di­ag­nos­tic Imag­ing Ser­vices. He is a cer­ti­fied ra­di­ol­ogy ad­min­is­tra­tor and is cer­ti­fied with the Amer­i­can Reg­istry of Ra­di­o­logic Tech­nol­o­gists. The de­part­ment is ac­cred­ited through the Amer­i­can Col­lege of Ra­di­ol­ogy

A PET-CT Scan com­bines the best of two types of scans, a PET Scan and a CT Scan. A “PET Scan” im­ages the cel­lu­lar ac­tiv­ity of the body at a very early stage, of­ten be­fore anatom­i­cal changes take place. The “CT Scan” pro­vides in­for­ma­tion about the body’s anatomy such as size, shape and lo­ca­tion. By com­bin­ing th­ese two scan­ning tech­nolo­gies, and the three­d­i­men­sional im­ages which are cre­ated, a PET/CT scan en­ables physi­cians to more ac­cu­rately di­ag­nose and iden­tify can­cer, heart disease and brain dis­or­ders. Un­til now, pa­tients had to live the area to un­dergo this all in one state-of-the-art screen­ing.

Not only does the PET-CT scan help di­ag­nose can­cer; it also helps de­ter­mine the state and pro­gres­sion of it. In ad­di­tion it pro­vides a clearer pic­ture of the re­sponse the disease is hav­ing to treat­ment.

“I’m im­pressed with the tech­nol­ogy,” Brian said, ex­plain­ing the min­i­mally in­va­sive pro­ce­dure takes about two hours from

Photo courtesy

Brian Bidwell, Di­rec­tor of Di­ag­nos­tic Imag­ing at North Coun­try Hospi­tal, is also a PET Scan tech­ni­cian.

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