The Helena Imaging Center offers digital-based radiography with experienced technologists on excellent equipment resulting in images equal to or better than any available imaging in the state.
Digital based imaging is available in two forms. The first is computed radiography which we incorporate utilizing the Fuji-based CR system. This is dependable with excellent image quality at the lowest possible x-ray dose. The images are immediately available for review and as soon as they are completed, they are available for any referring physician to view over the computer access given to each referring physician. The images can also be burned onto a DVD disc and sent with the patient. Readings are available the same day; routinely within 2 hours. Images can be distributed to the health provider via disc, digitally pushed to the St. Peter's PACS system, and they can be accessed by the physician on the internet-based image viewing software supplied by the Helena Imaging Center.
How does this compare to all other systems of radiography?
Film based radiography is the classic imaging utilized over the last 100 years. Over the last 20 years, this has converted to a computer digital-based radiography, much as cameras in the common population have converted from film-based to digital-based. Of the digital images, there are 2 available types; number 1, CR, which is computed radiography, and number 2, DR, which is digital radiography. The difference between the two is computed radiography uses mobile cassettes that can be moved closer to the individual whereas digital radiography has digital image acquisition screens that are permanently placed in the machine. The DR is much faster for very large volume institutions such as emergency rooms in hospitals, but has a higher x-ray dose and because of geometric distortion is not quite as sharp as some of the images available from CR in which the cassette is placed directly against the patient’s skin as opposed to being held in a table several inches away. These differences are much more noticeable in orthopedic or limb-type imaging of the extremities and much less noticeable on chest and abdomen imaging.
We feel that we achieve the best quality and most reproducible images at the lowest possible x-ray dose utilizing CR technology.