Imaging centers throughout southwest Virginia
LewisGale Regional Health System provides comprehensive medical imaging services to patients throughout southwest Virginia for the highest level of accuracy in diagnosis and treatment. Our network of full-service inpatient and outpatient diagnostic facilities provides convenient, personalized and comfortable care, with accessible parking, easy registration and same-day or next-day availability for many procedures.
Diagnostic imaging services we offer
Our board-certified radiologists use the latest advances in imaging and radiological technology to help your doctor accurately diagnose and treat your condition for optimal results. At LewisGale Regional Health System, you can count on a faster turnaround for your test results and the highest level of professional, personalized service.
Complementing our diagnostic imaging technology, our Picture Archival Communication System (PACS) allows doctors fast access to your medical records, images and test results from anywhere in the LewisGale Regional Health System network. Doctors can use PACS to share images instantaneously with a consulting physician to help ensure you receive the most accurate diagnosis.
X-rays use small doses of radiation to create pictures of the inside of the body. X-rays are especially helpful for bone fractures and joint injuries. They can also be used to find an infection, locate tumors, look for fluid in the lungs, locate the cause of an intestinal obstruction and diagnose heart and large blood vessel problems.
X-ray procedures are painless, fast and easy. Medical X-rays have increased the ability to detect disease or injury early enough for a medical problem to be managed, treated and cured. Because X-ray imaging is fast and easy, it’s particularly useful in emergency diagnosis and treatment.
Bone density screening
Bone density screening, also called dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) or bone densitometry, is an enhanced X-ray that measures bone loss. A DEXA scan is most often used to diagnose osteoporosis, a condition that often affects women after menopause but may also be found in men. Bone density screening can also assess your risk of developing fractures.
Bone density screening is a simple, quick and noninvasive procedure that does not require anesthesia. The amount of radiation used is extremely small—less than one-tenth the dose of a standard chest X-ray and less than a day’s exposure to natural radiation.
The brain is a complex organ that serves as the command center of your body. Advanced imaging technology is crucial to understanding the processes within the brain and for identifying irregularities that may result in a diagnosis of a brain abnormality.
As part of LewisGale Regional Health System's comprehensive neurological services, we offer brain imaging options, including electroencephalogram (EEG).
Breast screening and imaging is the best way to stay on top of your breast health. Early diagnosis for breast cancer is vital and imaging services, such as digital mammography and breast ultrasound, are hugely important in this process. Our hospital system boasts numerous standalone imaging centers and breast centers.
Computed tomography (CT) scanning
Computed tomography (CT) scans, also called computerized axial tomography (CAT) scans, are a medical imaging method that uses X-rays to generate detailed cross-sectional images of the body. These image "slices" are used to detect broken bones, cancers, blood clots, signs of heart disease and internal bleeding and to guide biopsies.
A CT scan is sometimes combined with positron emission tomography (PET) for an even higher level of accuracy and definition in disease diagnosis. Combined PET/CT scans are particularly helpful in pinpointing cancer.
CT scanning is fast, painless and usually noninvasive. Compared to regular X-rays, a CT scan provides extremely detailed, high-resolution images, and it captures organs, bones, soft tissue and blood vessels all at the same time.
A CT scan usually takes 10 to 15 minutes. Depending on the type of scan, an intravenous (IV) needle may be placed in your hand or arm and used to inject a contrast dye during the test, or the contrast may be given orally as a drink.
Fluoroscopy is a type of X-ray procedure that shows a continuous image on a monitor, much like an X-ray movie. It’s used to diagnose and treat conditions by displaying the movement of a body part or of an instrument or dye (contrast agent) through the body.
Fluoroscopy allows your doctor to see internal organs and systems in motion, making it useful in many medical tests and procedures, such as barium enemas and gastrointestinal series, catheter insertion, blood flow studies and orthopedic surgery.
The gastrointestinal system is made up of a large number of organs in the body, including the stomach, intestines, esophagus, liver, pancreas, gallbladder, colon and rectum. Through our comprehensive gastroenterology services, we offer advanced digestive imaging and screening services, including colonoscopy.
An accurate diagnosis is key when it comes to providing expert cardiac care. Identifying the cause of heart symptoms, like chest pain, or the heart condition a patient has in a timely manner can be the difference between fast, life-saving care and prolonged damage to your heart.
LewisGale Regional Health System offers an array of heart screening and imaging services, so our patients can receive expedited diagnoses and learn of heart risk factors and abnormalities before a heart event occurs.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
Magnetic resonance imaging uses magnetic fields, not radiation, to take pictures of the internal organs and structures inside the body. MRIs help doctors diagnose conditions and internal injuries and check to see if medicines or treatments are working.
LewisGale Regional Health System offers MRI services at all of our hospitals and is a leader in introducing advanced MRI technologies to southwest Virginia, such as the Signa HDx 3.0T™. This innovative, high-definition imaging system enables high-resolution imaging of large areas, such as the abdomen, spine, major joints and the whole body. It allows doctors to spot tumors and is particularly useful for neurologic studies. We also offer a wide-bore MRI to accommodate larger patients and short-bore MRI (patients are not fully enclosed in the MRI chamber).
Nuclear medicine is a type of diagnostic imaging that provides detailed pictures of what’s happening inside the body at the molecular and cellular level. Molecular imaging is a type of nuclear medicine that uses small amounts of radioactive material (radiotracer) to track molecular activity in the body. Other types include molecular ultrasound and magnetic resonance spectroscopy, which measure chemical levels in the body without the use of an imaging agent.
LewisGale Regional Health System is a member of the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging's Clinical Trials Network, indicating our commitment to standardized imaging protocols and clinical research education and training for our service providers.
Unlike other diagnostic imaging methods which create anatomical pictures, molecular imaging allows doctors to see exactly how the body is functioning and to measure chemical and biological processes in real-time. These unique insights allow doctors to detect problems in the earliest stages of a disease, often well before structural changes can be seen on CT and MRI, and to personalize your care based on these discoveries.
Nuclear medicine and molecular imaging procedures, which are noninvasive, safe and painless, are used to diagnose and treat cancers, brain disorders, heart disease and other disorders.
Positron emission tomography (PET) scan
Positron emission tomography is a molecular imaging method that uses small amounts of radioactive materials, called radiotracers, to detect molecular activity in the body. PET scans help doctors evaluate how well organs and tissues are working and help diagnose many conditions, such as some types of cancer, heart disease and neurological disorders.
PET scans provide extremely detailed, high-resolution images, which lead to more accurate diagnoses and sometimes avoid the need for exploratory surgery. For many diseases, these scans provide the most useful information needed to make a diagnosis or to determine appropriate treatment, if any. By identifying changes in the body at the cellular level, PET imaging can often detect disease before it is evident on other imaging tests, such as CT or MRI.
A nurse or technologist will give you a radioactive substance intravenously. Once the substance has been absorbed, the scan can take place.
The PET scanning machine detects and records the energy levels from the substance that was injected earlier. The images are viewed on a computer monitor. You may be asked to perform specific tasks before or during the test. For example, during a heart PET scan, you may be asked to walk on a treadmill. The scan process lasts about one to two hours.
Ultrasound tests use high-frequency sound waves to create video images of soft tissue areas of the body. Your doctor can use ultrasound imaging to examine many internal organs, including the cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, thyroid and reproductive systems or to guide procedures, such as needle biopsies.
LewisGale Regional Health System offers several types of ultrasound imaging, including Doppler, echocardiogram, abdomen, obstetric, renal and vascular, which may encompass venous vascular, arterial scan and carotid scan.
Ultrasound tests are noninvasive, painless and cost-effective. 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.
Preparing for your medical imaging test
Our goal at LewisGale Regional Health System is to ensure that your procedure goes as smoothly and efficiently as possible. You’ll receive specific information about preparing for your procedure when your appointment is scheduled.
For the most accurate results from your procedure, it’s important to follow all of the instructions provided. If you did not receive instructions or have questions about them, contact your doctor’s office and ask to speak to a nurse.
- Take time before your upcoming procedure to verify that your procedure is covered by your insurance carrier. If you’re unsure of your specific coverage, call your insurance company in advance.
- If you have questions, contact your doctor’s office or call our 24/7 Consult-A-Nurse® team at (877) 242-2362.
- Preregister online to save time at check-in.
Registration the day of your test
On the day of your procedure, check-in at the registration desk at the appropriate facility 15 to 30 minutes before your appointment. You will be asked to review and sign documents pertinent to your procedure. Bring the written order from your doctor for your procedure and a complete list of the medications you are presently taking.