Eastern Connecticut Health Network (ECHN) and Alliance Imaging, Inc. have announced they will offer the very latest technology in cancer diagnosis and care at Manchester Memorial Hospital, an affiliate of ECHN. The new technology, known as PET / CT combines the benefits of both Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Computed Tomography (CT) all in one scan, allowing physicians to diagnose cancer more quickly and accurately.
"The future of cancer care is available now, right here at ECHN," said Kristoffer Popovitch, Administrative Director of Cancer Services at ECHN. "This new technology allows the hospital to provide local physicians with the most powerful tools available to combat many types of cancer. Better, faster scans translate into more precise cancer treatment, and ultimately greater chance of recovery and improved quality of life for our patients."
PET / CT provides oncologists and other specialists the most comprehensive clinical information available for managing cancer. PET / CT integrates diagnostic PET and CT technologies into a single device, making it possible for doctors to collect both anatomical and biological information during a single examination. The information obtained by PET /CT allows for accurate tumor detection and localization for a variety of cancers, including melanoma, lymphoma, lung, colorectal, head and neck, and ovarian cancers.
Before having a scan, patients receive a dose of a "tracer," which mimics substances found naturally in the body, including water, sugars and proteins. These tracers accumulate in diseased cells. During the scan the tracers are detected by the PET / CT system, creating an image of the patient and highlighting any abnormal physiology. This image helps physicians determine if any disease is present, the location and extent of the disease, and track how rapidly the disease is spreading.
The benefits this new technology offers patients are tremendous and include earlier cancer diagnosis, greater accuracy in determining the stage that the cancer is in, and more precise treatment planning. The PET / CT exam is painless and safe, and is generally conducted in less than 30 minutes.
"PET / CT represents the gold standard in cancer care for the foreseeable future," said Popovitch. "At ECHN we feel strongly about two things; that patients receive the best care available close to home near family and friends, and that they receive it now. The arrival of PET / CT accomplishes both for local patients battling cancer."
For more information, or to schedule an appointment, please call 860.647.4757.