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HAMC one year into new MRI machine

By Staff | Apr 10, 2014

A little more than a year ago, Heart of America Medical Center installed it’s first permanent MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) machine after years of working with a mobile unit.

Combine that with a new CT scanner installed in May of 2013 and HAMC is providing the rural community with top-notch imaging for patients with a variety of conditions.

For Kirk Seaver, HAMC director of radiology, comfort of the patients is one of the biggest bonuses to having the equipment. An MRI can last as short as 20 minutes and a CT scan far shorter.

“A lot of people have misconceptions about the equipment,” Seaver said. “With the CT (Computed Tomography) scanner, you can be in and out usually in one or two minutes. A lot of people think, ‘Oh, gosh, I have to go in that thing?’ “

But both machines are more spacious than they once were, minimizing claustrophobia. The equipment offers many comforts, including feet first scanning and a sound buffering system to minimize the loud noises of the machines.

“Our scheduling is flexible and in most cases we can do same-day scanning procedures,” Seaver said.

The CT scanner is equipped with an advanced-dose reduction software, which results in a significant reduction in a patient’s exposure to radiation during a scan, while still providing strong image quality.

MRI allows for evaluation of bodily structures that may not be visible with other diagnostic imaging methods, according to Seaver. He added that MRI uses a strong magnetic field and radio frequency pulses to provide clear, highly detailed imaging. MRI can be used to help with treatment for cancer, vascular disease, strokes, and joints and musculoskeletal disorders.

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