Pain Management – getting straight to the point

Spectrum Medical Imaging, Liverpool

Different surgical procedures are used to treat patients who do not improve with non-operative therapies. Rapid deterioration is uncommon and symptoms often wax and wane or gradually improve. Surgery is almost always elective and considered only if sufficiently bothersome symptoms persist despite trials of less invasive interventions. Outcomes (leg pain and disability) seem to be better for surgery than for non-operative treatment, but the evidence is heterogeneous and often of limited quality.…

Bone density testing in general practice

An estimated 4.7 million Australians over the age of 50 currently have osteoporosis or osteopenia, with over 144,000 associated fractures (2013). Without major improvements in diagnosis and management, the rate of osteoporotic fracture will be around 30% higher by 2022, costing an estimated $33.6 billion over the next decade. In general practice, early detection can prevent a first fracture. For patients who have already fractured, investigation and initiation of osteoporosis medication is crucial to reduce the very high risk of subsequent fractures.…

Abbreviated breast MRI – what is it?

22nd June 2019, Spectrum Medical Imaging

Dynamic contrast enhanced breast – MRI must contain a minimal number of MRI sequences that is necessary to detect small enhancing breast lesions. What if we cut down the number of sequences but yet have enough accuracy to detect small early cancers? That’s what AB-MRI is – less number of sequences but yet enough to detect small lesions. …

Paediatric intracranial tumours – ordering the right test

A meningioma is a benign tumour that arises from the meninges. Meningiomas are often slow-growing, however in some instances, they may be fast-growing and their effects on adjacent brain tissue, nerves or vessels may cause serious disability. Timely access to a Bulk Billable MRI scan can enable a quick diagnosis and appropriate referral for neurosurgery without the patient requiring a CT scan with the associated ionizing radiation, especially relevant given the patient’s age.…

Cerebral Amyloid Angiopathy – a real case study

We read last fortnight about cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA). I am not sure that I can pick up a CAA when I see one. I mean, we are not experts in CT or MRI of the brain. A fairly obvious, bit chunk of an  infarct is easy to spot. I can also pick up any asymmetry in the scan. Any more than that, i will have reached out to the printed report.…

The role of breast MRI in breast cancer detection

Many countries now recommend annual MRI screening in conjunction with mammography for high risk groups. The only problem is that different countries define high risk differently. Medicare item 63464 can be used for the surveillance and diagnosis of women under 50 years of age at high risk of developing breast cancer, and who have no signs or symptoms of the disease.…

Case Study – man with increasing neck pain for one month

44-year-old male with 1 month of increasing neck pain was referred for a cervical spine injection. A CT scan of the cervical spine two weeks prior (Figure A), revealed foraminal narrowing at the C5-6 level. There was a significant difference between the new scan and the previous scan. There was severe destruction of the C5-6 disc and of the adjacent C5 and C6 vertebral end plates with retrolisthesis of C5 on C6.

Undiagnosed pelvic pain – is it pelvic congestion syndrome?

22nd December 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

Endometriosis is the most frequently diagnosed condition in women with chronic pelvic pain. What if they can’t find endometriosis on laparoscopy? In 60% of women with chronic pelvic pain, the cause remained unknown. A significant proportion of these women may suffer from pelvic congestion syndrome (PVC). Is this one of those “idiopathic” type condition which is diagnosed when all tests are negative?…

Metallic implants/prosthesis – are they MRI safe?

28th October 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

Metallic objects, implants or prosthesis can render magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) unsafe or affect the quality of the images. Our patients who have metallic joint prosthesis in-situ not uncommonly require further imaging. This can pose a bit of a challenge as many of the same patient population who require the joint replacement are the same population of patient that require further imaging.…

3D Mammogram – is there a role in clinical practice?

30th September, 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

There is no question that screening mammograms have led to a decline in late stage breast cancers. There have been a gradual decrease in breast cancer mortality, at least partly, due to the introduction of screening mammograms over the last 25 years. But screening mammograms are not perfect. In women with dense breast tissue, the sensitivity of mammogram decreases.…