Radiology & Imaging FAQ
Radiology and imaging procedures conducted by Hunterdon Radiological Associates are often necessary for the detection, diagnosis, and management of diseases and injuries. Our facility employs a team of licensed, board-certified radiologists who perform a variety of diagnostic imaging services using the most advanced equipment available. We understand your concerns about various procedures, especially radiation exposure levels, so we’ve created a list of imaging and radiology FAQs commonly asked by patients.
What Are The Risks Of X-Rays?
Although X-rays use low doses of ionizing radiation, we utilize high-resolution digital X-ray technology that lets us use 80% less radiation than traditional X-rays. These X-rays are utilized wisely and gently to ensure each patient’s safety.
What’s An MRI?
An MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging, uses high-resolution diagnostic imaging technology to detect injuries or abnormalities in soft tissue and bone. Our radiologists are experts in the field and utilize a wide-bore MRI system that’s wider than standard closed-bore machines, which make it less stressful for patients, especially those who suffer from claustrophobia.
What Are The Risks Of MRI?
MRI doesn’t use radiation, so there’s little to no risk. However, it does utilize a high-strength external magnet which may interfere with certain body implants. To ensure your safety, we require completion of an extensive questionnaire prior to receiving an MRI.
What’s An Ultrasound?
An ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to produce clear images of the inside of your body. These images, called sonograms, are instrumental in examining fetuses in pregnant women, detecting tumors, and diagnosing the underlying cause of pain and swelling within organs. We’re an ACR-accredited ultrasound facility with ARDMS-certified sonographers.
What Are The Risks Of Ultrasounds?
An ultrasound is an extremely safe and painless procedure that uses no ionizing radiation or injections.
What’s A CT Exam?
A computed tomography (CT) or computerized axial tomography (CAT) scan is an advanced, non-invasive x-ray that takes multiple digital images. Our multi-slice CT scanning can detect lesions as small as a grain of rice, which is especially beneficial for early detection of lung cancer and other abnormalities.
What Are The Risks Of CT Scans?
Because CT scans use very thin X-ray beams to obtain images, you're exposed to minimal amounts of radiation that are within the limits determined to be safe. Contrast mediums are iodine-based dyes used to make organs and blood vessels stand out during the scan. There's a risk for an allergic reaction to this dye, especially if you’re allergic to iodine. Our knowledgeable radiologists discuss all issues with allergies, asthma, and cardiac conditions prior to a CT scan and may choose to do the scan without administering a contrast medium or use an alternate exam for your safety.
What’s A Mammogram?
A mammogram is an X-ray of the breast to search for early signs of breast cancer and help decrease breast cancer deaths. Mammography should be a priority for women of all ages. Your age and breast cancer risk determine how often you should have a mammogram. We’re ACR-accredited in digital mammography for screening and diagnostic mammograms and also offer 3D digital mammography, called Digital Breast Tomosynthesis, which can detect breast cancer at earlier stages.
What Are The Risks Of Mammograms?
Mammograms expose you to a low dose of radiation, but the benefit of detecting breast cancer as early as possible outweighs the risk. Compression of the breast is required to spread out tissue, so small abnormalities won’t be obscured. You could feel some discomfort, but you should always alert our technicians if you’re in pain.
At Hunterdon Radiological Associates, we pledge to utilize our imaging technology wisely and gently for adult and child patients alike. Our technologists are highly skilled at performing mammography, and our board-certified radiologists interpret your films, but mammograms aren’t 100% accurate and may result in a false negative or false positive. Cancers that are too small or in an area difficult to view may go undetected. It’s vital that you continue performing monthly breast self-exams and yearly breast exams with your physician.
Will Your Insurance Cover Imaging Services?
Hunterdon Radiological Associates accepts most insurances, but coverage for imaging tests depends on your insurance carrier and individual insurance plan. Please contact your insurance provider directly for questions regarding your coverage.
Trust Our Radiology & Imaging Experts
We offer a variety of imaging services at our three convenient Diagnostic Imaging Centers in New Jersey. Contact us at Brems Imaging Center in Annandale to schedule bone densitometry, CT scans, mammography, ultrasounds, or X-rays; Hunterdon Imaging, P.A., at Brems to schedule a wide-bore MRI; or Hunterdon Imaging, P.A., in Flemington to schedule a PET/CT scan or wide-bore MRI.