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Ringgold County Hospital
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  CT Scan
Digital Mammogram
Fluoroscopy
MRI - Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Nuclear Medicine
Ultrasound
X-Ray


CT Scan

CTScanWHAT IS A CT SCAN?

A CT scan also referred to CAT scan, computer assisted tomography, is a diagnostic imaging test used to uncover medical conditions. CT images of internal organs, bone, soft tissue and blood vessels provide greater clarity and reveal more details than regular x-ray exams.

CT is an x-ray procedure enhanced by the use of a computer. This results in a three dimensional view, or slice, of a particular part of your body. The computer is able to put together the series of slices and create a three-dimensional view, clearly showing both bone and soft tissues.

HOW DO I PREPARE FOR THE EXAM?

During some CT scans, a special dye also called contrast material is injected through an IV, which outlines the blood vessels and highlights organs of the body. An oral contrast, one which you drink, is routinely given for CT exams of the abdomen or pelvis to help differentiate organs from other organs or abnormalities. The oral contrast outlines the gastrointestinal system, stomach, small bowel, colon and rectum.

CT scans can detect many conditions that do not show up on conventional x-rays. Your doctor has ordered this exam to help make an accurate diagnosis of your condition. The results help determine the best course of treatment for you.

For exams requiring contrast a current creatinine test (within 30 days) may be required. The creatinine test is a blood draw which evaluates your kidney function and will normally be performed at your physician's office or lab prior to the exam. If fasting is required, you are a diabetic, or have any allergies, you will be given special instructions by your referring physician. Wear comfortable clothing around the area to be scanned. You may be asked to wear a gown. Also inform your technologist if you have any old images so they may be used for comparison.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE TEST?

Our technologist will take a brief medical history. You will be asked to lie down on the scanning table the IV, if needed, will be started. The part of your body to be imaged is then positioned in the large doughnut-shaped ring. The CT is quiet and scan time is very short. You may be given specific breathing instructions.

Plan for a 30 to 60 minute appointment.

AFTER THE TEST

You may return to normal activities following your exam. If you are a diabetic, check with your doctor for instructions before resuming your medication.

When can I expect the results?

A radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring physician. Your doctor will review the report and contact you with the results

Questions: Call our Medical Imaging Department at (641) 464-4400. Our office hours are Mon-Fri 7am-5pm. Our technologists are on-call after hours and on weekends and can be reached by the nursing staff. To reach a technologist after hours please call the main hospital number at (641) 464-3226. We are happy to help!

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Digital Mammogram

Digital Mammograpm WHAT IS A DIGITAL MAMMOGRAM?

A digital mammogram is a noninvasive test used to help detect breast diseases. Digital mammography uses a computer rather than film to record and store images of the breast. These images become a more versatile diagnostic tool that can be enlarged or highlighted.

Digital Mammography has been proven superior to analog (film) imaging particularly in those women under the age of 50, patients who have dense breasts, or patients who are pre or peri-menopausal. Our equipment uses 1/4 to 1/3 less radiation dose than analog imaging. Monthly breast self exam is an essential part of breast health.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SCREENING AND DIAGNOSTIC MAMMOGRAMS?

Screening mammography is just as the name implies. It is routine testing done yearly beginning at age 40 for most women. Routine screening is for women who are asymptomatic.

Diagnostic mammography is typically ordered for a woman who has felt a lump or a change in her breast during monthly self breast exam or during a physician's examination. A diagnostic mammogram may also be performed if a radiologist determines additional information is needed following a screening mammogram. If additional imaging is necessary, we will call you to schedule a diagnostic mammogram. We understand that this call may cause anxiety, but do not be alarmed. The need for additional imaging is fairly common and we will discuss the results with you the day of your exam.

HOW DO I PREPARE FOR THE EXAM?

Please wear a comfortable two-piece outfit. Refrain from applying lotions, deodorant, powders or perfumes around the breast and armpit area. Inform us if your last mammogram was performed at a location other than Ringgold County Hospital. We will contact that facility and attempt to obtain the images for comparison prior to the exam.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE TEST?

Our technologist will ask you about your medical history. You will be asked to undress from the waist up and a gown will be provided. Our technologist will position your breast on a platform and gradually compress it with a plastic paddle to obtain at least 2 pictures of each breast. After the exam, you may resume normal activities. Deodorant and toiletries are available for your convenience.

The exam is relatively painless and takes approximately 15 minutes.

WHEN CAN I EXPECT THE RESULTS?

A radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring physician. You will receive a letter in the mail from Ringgold County Hospital. If additional images are needed, we will contact you to schedule this follow up and notify your doctor. Your doctor will review the report and contact you with the results.

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Fluoroscopy

Fluoro What is Fluoroscopy?

Fluoroscopy uses low level x-rays to obtain real-time moving images of your internal structures. It displays the movement of a body part or dye (contrast material) through the body.

Common uses include diagnosis of gastrointestinal disorders, joint injections or orthopaedic pain and problems, as well as infertility examinations.

How do I prepare for the exam?

For some gastrointestinal exams, you may be asked to fast for 6 hours before the exam. A gown may be required to be worn

What happens during the test?

Our technologist will take a brief medical history. You will be positioned on the fluoroscopy table either on your side or back. For gastrointestinal exams, you may be given barium (a contrast) to drink during the exam. If a barium enema is being performed, a small rubber tip will be inserted in your rectum where barium is allowed to flow into your intestine. There may be slight cramping. For all procedures, a radiologist is in the room reviewing the images live time and you may be asked to change positions.

Gastrointestinal exams can vary in length from as little as 30 minutes to a number of hours depending on how long it takes for the barium to reach the colon.

After the test

For gastrointestinal exams, barium may cause constipation following the procedure if it is not completely eliminated. Please drink plenty of fluids and eat high fiber foods to excrete the barium. Bowel movements may be white and chalky.

When can I expect the results?

A radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring physician. Your doctor will then review the report and contact you with the results.

Questions: Call our Medical Imaging Department at (641) 464-4400. Our office hours are Mon-Fri 7am-5pm. Our technologists are on-call after hours and on weekends and can be reached by the nursing staff. To reach a technologist after hours please call the main hospital number at (641) 464-3226. We are happy to help!

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MRI - Magnetic Resonance Imaging

MRI WHAT IS A MRI?

Magnetic resonance imaging or MRI uses a magnetic field, radio waves and a computer to generate cross-sectional images of organs, soft tissues, bone and virtually all other internal body structures. The MRI can then be examined on a computer monitor or a CD of images can be made. MRI does not use radiation.

WHAT CONTRAINDICATIONS DO I NEED TO BE AWARE OF?

If you are pregnant, have had an aneurysm clip, have had ear or eye prosthesis or have a pacemaker, you may not be a candidate for an MRI. Because some tests require an injection of intravenous (IV) contrast, please inform your doctor if you have high blood pressure, diabetes, or have (had) renal insufficiency or acute vascular disease. You may or may not be able to receive contrast.

HOW DO I PREPARE FOR THE EXAM?

Most generally, there is no prior preparation required before the exam. Some tests require an injection of IV contrast. For exams requiring contrast, a current creatinine test (within 45 days) may be required. The creatinine test is a blood draw which evaluates your kidney function and will normally be performed at your physician's office or lab prior to the exam. If fasting is necessary, your doctor will provide these instructions. You will need to remove all jewelry, hairclips, and bobby pins. In addition, you will need to remove all clothing containing metal including bras with metal enclosures and jeans with metal zippers and buttons. You will be provided a gown.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE TEST?

Our technologist will take a brief medical history. If you are receiving IV contrast, you will be asked to lie down on the scanning table and the contrast material will be injected into a vein in your arm. The table will then slide into the scanning area. During the test, the MRI will make a rapid tapping noise. Just relax and remain still.

The scan typically takes 30 to 60 minutes depending on the exam performed and if contrast is required.

You may return to normal activities following your exam.

WHEN CAN I EXPECT THE RESULTS?

A radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring physician. Your doctor will review the report and contact you with the results.

Questions: Call our Medical Imaging Department at (641) 464-4400. Our office hours are Mon-Fri 7am-5pm. Our technologists are on-call after hours and on weekends and can be reached by the nursing staff. To reach a technologist after hours please call the main hospital number at (641) 464-3226. We are happy to help!

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Nuclear Medicine

MedImaging What is Nuclear Medicine?

Nuclear medicine is a subspecialty within the field of radiology. It comprises diagnostic examinations that result in images of body anatomy and function. The images are developed based on the detection of energy emitted from a radioactive substance given to the patient, either intravenously or by mouth. Generally, radiation to the patient is similar to that resulting from standard x-ray examinations.

Nuclear medicine images can assist the physician in diagnosing diseases. Tumors, infection and other disorders can be detected by evaluating organ function. Specifically, nuclear medicine can be used to:

  • Analyze kidney function
  • Image blood flow and function of the heart
  • Scan lungs for respiratory and blood-flow problems
  • Identify blockage of the gallbladder
  • Evaluate bones for fracture, infection, arthritis or tumor
  • Determine the presence or spread of cancer
  • Identify bleeding into the bowel
  • Locate the presence of infection
  • Measure thyroid function to detect an overactive or underactive thyroid
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Ultrasound

MedImaging What is an Ultrasound?

Ultrasound imaging, also called ultrasound scanning or sonography, involves exposing part of the body to high-frequency sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of the body. Ultrasound exams do not use ionizing radiation (x-rays). Because ultrasound images are captured in real-time, they can show the structure and movement of the body's internal organs, as well as blood flowing through blood vessels.

Ultrasound is a useful way of examining many of the body's internal organs, including but not limited to the:

  • Heart and blood vessels, including the abdominal aorta and its major branches
  • Liver
  • Gallbladder
  • Spleen
  • Pancreas
  • Kidneys
  • Bladder
  • Uterus, ovaries and unborn child (fetus) in pregnant patients
  • Thyroid and parathyroid glands
  • Scrotum (testicles)
HOW DO I PREPARE FOR THE EXAM?

You may also be asked to wear a gown. For abdominal ultrasounds, you will be asked to fast for 6 hours prior to the exam. For pelvic exams, please come to our office with a full bladder. For kidney exams ensure you are well hydrated. Also inform your technologist if you have any old images so they may be used for comparison.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE TEST?

Our technologist will take a brief medical history. You will be asked to stand, sit, or lie down on the scanning table depending on the part of the body to be scanned. The ultrasound technician (sonographer) will place a clear gel on the area of the body to be imaged. The sonographer or radiologist then presses the transducer against the skin and sweeps it back and forth over the area of interest. The transducer is a small hand-held device that resembles a microphone, attached to an ultrasound machine by a cord. The test is painless to perform. After the exam, the gel is wiped off and you may resume normal activities.

Ultrasounds typically take 30 to 60 minutes depending on the exam performed.

WHEN CAN I EXPECT THE RESULTS?

A radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring physician. Your doctor will review the report and contact you with the results.

Questions: Call our Medical Imaging Department at (641) 464-4400. Our office hours are Mon-Fri 7am-5pm. Our technologists are on-call after hours and on weekends and can be reached by the nursing staff. To reach a technologist after hours please call the main hospital number at (641) 464-3226. We are happy to help!

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XRay

MedImaging WHAT IS AN X-RAY?

An X-ray is an image of your bones and internal organs. X-rays are most often used to detect bone or joint problems, or to check the heart and lungs or abdomen.

X-rays work by sending small amounts of radiation through the body. X-rays are the most frequently used form of medical imaging.

HOW DO I PREPARE FOR THE EXAM?

In most cases there is no prior preparation for a general X-ray exam. You may be asked to remove any jewelry, buckles, or items with metal enclosures which may hamper a clear reading. You may also be asked to wear a gown. Ensure that you tell the technologist if you are pregnant or suspect that you might be pregnant or have any metal in your body in the area that is to be scanned. Also inform your technologist if you have any old images so they may be used for comparison.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE TEST?

Our technologist will take a brief medical history. You will be asked to stand, sit, or lie down on the table depending on the part of the body to be imaged. A lead apron may be placed on your body to shield you from the x-rays. The technologist may give you breathing instructions if necessary. Your technologist will walk into the next room to activate the machine. The test is painless and takes only a few minutes to perform. In most cases, you are free to resume to normal activities following the exam.

WHEN CAN I EXPECT THE RESULTS?

A radiologist will review the images and send a report to your referring physician. Your doctor will then review the report and contact you with the results.

Questions: Call our Medical Imaging Department at (641) 464-4400. Our office hours are Mon-Fri 7am-5pm. Our technologists are on-call after hours and on weekends and can be reached by the nursing staff. To reach a technologist after hours please call the main hospital number at (641) 464-3226. We are happy to help!

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641-464-3226 | info@rchmtayr.org | 504 N. Cleveland | Mt. Ayr, IA 50854-2201
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