Radiology is often key to diagnostic and therapeutic interventions, with the uses of radiology ranging from X-rays and MR scans to mammograms and a range of other medical imaging exams.
The main uses of radiology are to explore the causes of symptoms, confirm diagnoses, create a treatment plan and monitor that treatment to ensure it's working.
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One of the key uses of radiology is to diagnose conditions. This is know as diagnostic radiology. Here non-invasive imaging techniques are used to scan and diagnose a patient. The test will usually involve using low doses of radiation to create a highly detailed scanned image of a particular area.
Examples of diagnostic radiology include:
- Ultrasound scans
- X-rays - also known as radiology
- Computed Tomography (CT) scans
- Nuclear medicine scans
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans
This is one of the uses of radiology that can help identify a wide range of problems. From broken bones and gastrointestinal conditions to heart conditions and blood clots - these are just some of the vast range of conditions that diagnostic radiology can help to identify.
Doctors may also use diagnostic radiology to monitor whether your body is responding to a current treatment and if so - how is it responding. Other uses of radiology for diagnoses include screening for breast and colon cancers.
Another of the uses of radiology is interventional radiology. This form of radiology involved using imaging technology to guide medical procedures and hopefully eliminate the need for surgery and scopes to diagnose and treat conditions. It will usually involve using CT scans, MRI scans and ultrasounds to d so. You will usually be awake or under a very mild sedative during these procedures and should feel minimal discomfort.
Common uses of radiology for intervention include:
- Treating artery or vein blockages
- Treating cancers
- Treating back pain
- Treating problems in the liver or kidneys.
Radiologists performing this form of radiology are highly specialised and will have undergone extra training to safely and accurately perform these procedures.
Now that you know some of the uses of radiology it's important that you understand exactly what your radiologist does to support your healthcare. This can involve:
- Acting as a consulting expert to your referring physician, aiding them in choosing the correct method of examination and treatment.
- Using radiation or minimally invasive, image-guided therapies to treat diseases and conditions such as cancer.
- Correlating medical image findings with the findings from other tests and examinations.
- Recommending and further examinations or treatments that may be necessary for a patient.
- Directing technologists (who operate radiology equipment) in the performance of exams.
If you would like more information about the uses of radiology, or if your have been referred to a radiologist and want to find out more about what to expect, get in touch with our Hospital in Marbella.