About Edward Soll

Dr. Soll graduated from Tulane Medical School in 1969 and interned at Ochsner Hospital. After completing a residency in Diagnostic Radiology at Charity/USPHS hospitals he was certified by the American Board of Radiology in 1973. He has been practicing in greater Jefferson and New Orleans ever since and now directs his practice predominately to Musculo-skeletal, Spine and Prostate Cancer MRI.

Can I Have an MRI During Pregnancy?

When we become injured or sick, it can be troubling, but with support and medicine, we can treat ourselves and our symptoms. However, when a woman is pregnant and becomes sick or injured, there are more lives than hers to consider during treatment. There are lists of activities and products that pregnant woman have to avoid but should medical imaging be one of these? We are going to discuss the precautions and protections in place to help keep both mommy and baby healthy.

The first thing that probably comes to mind when considering the danger of medical imaging while pregnant is radioactive substances and procedures that utilize this kind of medicine. And when we think of radioactive medical procedures, the first that come to mind are X-rays, CTs, and PET-CT scans. All of these procedures have a radioactive element. But before expectant mothers become worried, they should know that there are safety guidelines for their benefit.

Expectant mothers should not be barred from accessing potentially life-saving imaging procedures. As such, medical imaging equipment manufacturers and researchers work hard to give the best quality equipment along with the safest for all potential patients. Being the oldest form of medical imaging technology, X-rays have been used by pregnant women since their invention. Having your X-rays performed at a facility like Doctors Imaging means that your doctor and our radiologists will seek alternatives to radiation and, if unavoidable, will work to reduce the dosage of radiation exposure. As with all medical procedures, if you think that you might be pregnant, be sure to let your doctor or the radiology technician know.

At Doctors Imaging, the procedures that seem to cause mothers the most worry are CT scans and MRIs. Please know that CT scans use X-rays combined with computer technology in order to compose images for medical use. Pregnant women: Please talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of CT scans.

The other procedure we hear the most concern about from expectant mother is an MRI. Fortunately, we can often alleviate these concerns because MRIs are one of the safest procedures for pregnant women. Having an MRI during pregnancy is safe because MRIs, or magnetic resonance imaging, only use the magnetic mechanical components along with radio frequencies in order to map the interior of the body. There are absolutely no radioactive components for mothers to worry about and the detail that can be gleaned from MRIs during pregnancy is both valuable and necessary. At Doctors Imaging, our 3T MRI technology is the most powerful MRI in clinical use. For MRI patients with claustrophobia, we also have an open MRI machine this tends to be much less intimidating.

Finally, please know that we don’t recommend PET-CT scans for pregnant or breastfeeding mothers. PET (positron emission tensor imaging CT scans) use nuclear medicine in order to highlight differences between healthy and diseased tissue in the body and brain. This test utilizes a radioactive drug that is administered directly into the body. This drug can be harmful to the baby. Often, physicians will find an alternative diagnostic method in these cases.

We are committed to keeping both mom and baby as comfortable and healthy as possible at Doctors Imaging. If you have more questions about X-rays, CT scans or MRIs during pregnancy, please feel free to call our offices in Metairie at 504-883-8111, Monday through Friday.

What Should Patients Expect During a Low-Dose CT-Scan?

CT scans are used by doctors in order to create detailed cross-sectional images of the internal tissues and organs. By using the lowest possible dose of radiation in combination with computer technology, doctors can give patients clear and accurate diagnoses. For those who have never had this particular imaging procedure performed, this preview might help calm your fears or concerns.

What Is a Low-Dose CT Scan?

CT scans are used by doctors in order to create detailed cross-sectional images of the internal tissues and organs.A CT scan uses a combination of X-rays and computer technology in order to create images. X-rays use a small amount of radiation in order to show the body’s internal structures and produce images. On average, Americans are exposed to 3.1 mSv of radiation annually. CT scans use a slightly higher amount than that and qualified radiologists use the lowest possible dosage based on the size of a patient.

What Happens During the Exam?

CT scanners have the appearance of a tube with a spinning detector that collects the images your radiologist will use. For some procedures, the radiologist may ask that you abstain from eating for one or more hours prior to your examination.

Your CT scan will proceed as follows:

  1. While lying on your back,  a table will move your body slowly, feet-first, through the machine.
  2. If needed, your doctor may request contrast  for your CT scan procedure. Contrast is a substance that is used during imaging procedures to better understand your medical condition. Contrast material will be administered through an IV or by drinking a flavored substance. Some patients mention an itching or cooling sensation near the injection site or a slightly metallic taste, but it is still relatively safe and painless.
  3. As you are moved through the machine, your technologist will be able to see, hear and speak to you.

The images and report are created after the procedure is performed, and you and your personal doctor can review the results  together to determine your treatment options.

You should inform your doctor if you have medication allergies or an allergy to iodine. You should also let your doctor know if you suffer from diabetes or any heart, thyroid or kidney conditions as contrast material may sometimes cause an adverse reaction in patients with these conditions. Otherwise, CT scans are non-invasive and painless and can provide incredibly useful information for your doctors to use in providing the best treatment options for you.

Doctors Imaging is now offering low-dose CT lung cancer screenings, recommended annually for those at high risk for lung cancer, for the low cost of just $99. Lung screening is performed without contrast.  To schedule your appointment, use our online appointment form or call 504-883-8111.

Stop Smoking and Get Whole Body Benefits

The benefits after you stop smoking begin immediately and they are numerous.
Quitting any addiction is a difficult task. Addiction is a multi-layered process in which there is no quick fix, one magic pill or medicine that will ease the symptoms of withdrawal or the intense cravings. But the benefits after you stop smoking begin immediately and they are numerous.

New Tastes

When you smoke a cigarette, you are inhaling hot, carcinogen-filled smoke. Cigarettes contain as many as 4,000 chemical additives and all of these dangerous ingredients scald the surface of the tongue where your taste buds are. This leads to a loss of tasting sensitivity and taste bud regeneration which is why smokers often do not have the same perception of things like bitterness and sweetness. Upon quitting smoking, many people report the way food tastes different because of the new taste buds that have grown.

Better Skin

Smoking does not just cause harm the internal organs, it wreaks havoc on the skin. The carcinogens and nicotine in cigarettes damage the collage cells of the skin causing a higher prevalence of wrinkles and a general pallor to one’s complexion. Smoking is also extremely dehydrating, making the skin dry and dull. Although we cannot reverse the hands of time, quitting allows for better skin hydration and appearance.

Bigger Appetite

Cigarettes have been known to reduce appetite because they are a stimulant and make the metabolism do a slight jump and hunger pains can be forgotten momentarily. Many of those quitting smoking remark that they feel a sudden increase in their appetite and experience weight gain. It might a combination of loss of an oral habit along better tasting ability, but an increased appetite, within reason, is a small price for a deadly habit. Try adding a light exercise routine to your day to help combat rapid weight gain.

Clear Breathing

The effects of quitting smoking on the lungs is almost immediate. In only a few days, one can feel the difference. When using cigarettes, the smoke that you inhale burns the cilia in the lungs and esophagus. They can grow back unless repeatedly exposed to harmful cigarette smoke. Within 1-9 normal breathing without “smoker’s cough” can return

Mood and Energy (blood pressure)

A smoker’s addiction, though deadly, is nothing more than a series of chemical reactions. Chemicals in cigarettes excite the pleasure centers of the brain and make the body become addicted. Oxygen levels in the body decrease because of damage to the lungs making smokers feel sluggish until they smoke again. Carbon monoxide levels increase because the body is not getting enough oxygen and increase blood pressure. This effect makes smokers vulnerable to strokes but it can also cause a low mood and difficult sleep patterns. Nicotine addiction can be overcome in as little as 2 weeks helping with mood and at 2 months, circulation in the body increases causing better energy.

Stop smoking today and begin to feel the whole body benefits. If you have been smoking for an extended period of time, you should consider having a lung screening. While lung cancer is one of the most prevalent diseases in the United States, the sooner it is caught, the better the results treatment can make. Doctors Imaging in Metairie is the only facility in the greater New Orleans area that has been accredited by the American College of Radiology as a certified lung cancer screening center. Because of our equipment, experience, and staff, patients trust in the thoroughness and results of our screenings.

If you would like to book an appointment for a lung cancer screening, you can fill out our Request an Appointment form or you can call our offices in Metairie at 504-883-8111 Monday through Saturday.

Doctors Imaging Can Help You Document Your Work Injury

Regardless of what kind of industry or field you work in, worksite injuries are a serious problem for both company and employee. Companies have to work to find the cause of the injury and the employee might be out of work for weeks, months, or even years recovering or managing a debilitating injury. Furthermore, if there are court proceedings in order for the employee to receive compensation, proper medical images need to be produced so that a jury can fully understand the extent of the injury and the effect it will have on the employee’s quality of life.

Having a work injury can be a very difficult time period for an employee. According to the Department of Labor Statistics, there were as many as 2.8 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses” in 2017 reported by private industries. While it is the responsibility of both employee and employer to make sure that working conditions are as safe as possible, some accidents cannot be avoided. When they do occur, in order to procure the right treatment and compensation, a proper diagnosis must be performed with the help of medical imaging.

At Doctors Imaging, we have handled all kinds of work-related injuries and we are confident that our equipment and professional experience are substantial for all courts and attorneys. Finding a private imaging center will be cheaper than visiting a hospital, take half the time and give you just the same if not better results. We accept all majorhealth insurance plans and we can make flexible payment plans if your settlement case is ongoing but you need to seek treatment.

For your work-related injury, have your imaging performed at Doctors Imaging. Our radiologists have over 100 years of combined experience and our technology is state of the art. If you have more questions, please call us at 504-883-8111.

More States in Need of LDCT Screening Centers

As opposed to cancers like leukemia and prostate, lung cancer is most often caused by lifestyle choices such as smoking cigarettes, other tobacco products or working in areas where carcinogen-filled smoke is present.

There has been an increase in advertising and lobbying for anti-tobacco campaigns. In addition, there are more than a few organizations now attempting to stop potential smokers in their youth before they pick up the habit. Thanks to these efforts and increased study on the connection between smoking and lung cancer, the rates of lung cancer in the US have decreased considerably.

In hopes of combating the lung cancer statistics, the American College of Radiology and the American Cancer Society have teamed up to offer certification and accreditation to different facilities around the country that have met the strict informative, functional, and practicing ways that contribute to increased knowledge and prevention of lung cancer.

This initiative makes states more competitive in their efforts toward eradicating lung cancer, especially in states where there are high numbers of diagnosis. Medical imaging communities have done studies on the effectiveness of these centers throughout the country by first surveying how many are currently in operation. The survey showed that “nationwide, each state, including Washington DC, had a mean of four screening centers; however, 11 states had no screening centers identified. There was an average of 0.3 screening centers per 100,000 people aged 55 to 79. Among the states with the best capacity of LDCT screening centers were Washington, DC, Connecticut, Virginia, Colorado, and Maryland.”

The areas that need improvement are states like Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, West Virginia, and Missouri because they have some of the highest prevalence of lung cancer.

Low-Dose CTs have been shown to be one of the best measures taken in early diagnosis of lung cancer. Because of the aggressive nature of lung cancer and the rarity of lung transplants, the earlier lung cancer is diagnosed, the sooner treatment can begin and the better the chances of survival are. CTs, or computed tomography, is using X-ray capabilities with computer technology to in order to examine the internal structures of the body. CTs are the preferred imaging tool when searching for the presence of lung cancer. Lungs are made up of tissues, blood vessels and nerves. Because CT imaging can produce cross-sectional images of the body’s tissue, CTs can see through bone and see the lungs from several angles, reassuring the patient that their scan is thorough.

Some may be hesitant to book the appointment for a lung cancer screening because they are worried about pain from the procedure or the possibility of radiation exposure. CTs are completely non-invasive and the average procedure takes no more than 30 minutes. The CT machines are calibrated so that the radiation used to highlight the internal organs is an extremely low dose, about as much natural radiation a person experiences during a year. Even more beneficial is that your results will be ready and transported to your practicing physician on the same day. He or she may need more time to review the results but you won’t have to wait for an obligatory waiting period.

If you believe that there is a possibility of you developing lung cancer or you are a former or current smoker over the age of 50, you should come to Doctors Imaging for a lung cancer screening test. Our machines are state-of-the-art along with our friendly and experienced staff want to help you with your imaging questions and concerns. Please review our CT Scan Pageto learn preparations and common questions or call our offices at 504-883-8111.

5 Ways We Increase Comfort During Your MRI, CT Scan or Other Test

When patients need to have medical imaging, they face a variety of emotions. At Doctors Imaging, we understand that having these procedures can make patients nervous, especially when thinking about the possible results. This is why we implement a number of different practices in the hopes of making our patients comfortable and secure in their choice to use Doctors Imaging as their imaging facility.

  1. To begin, the patient that has the most information about the procedure often feels the most confident and relaxed. Technicians and physicians often remark that the patients who are the most nervous are simply reacting to a lack of information. So before coming in for your exam, be sure to review our frequently asked medical imaging questions for helpful information about our medical imaging devices. What you’ll find throughout our website, or by asking our technicians questions, is experienced knowledge and an eagerness to make our patients feel as prepared and comfortable as possible. At Doctors Imaging, we believe that knowledge is powerful but we also believe it is our responsibility to make our patients as comfortable as possible while in our care. We have a variety of approaches that we manage, all with the goal of acquiring the best images possible for physicians while providing patients with the best experience possible as well.
  2. Many people have a problem with claustrophobic feelings and this phobia can be elevated during these kinds of procedures. During exams like CT scans and MRIs, patients are moved into the machine. Although they are hardly trapped, the feeling of the enclosure can seem overwhelming for some. To combat this problem, doctors and technicians ask that patients be as honest as possible so that the procedure can be done as efficiently as possible. For example, if a patient is feeling particularly nervous or jumpy, they can fidget or make involuntary movements that can impact the quality of images.If you are a patient that has a problem with claustrophobia, you have some options. At Doctors Imaging, we can play relaxing music while you are having the exam performed in an effort to keep you calm. If you have a specific type of music you find relaxing, don’t hesitate to ask your technologist to play it. You can even bring your own CD with you.
  3. Other options for claustrophobic patients would be a change in medical imaging devices. MRIs are often described as enclosed but fortunately, an open or standing MRI is available. When using this kind of equipment, patients are not totally enveloped in the machine. But before you change the kind of instrument you use, you need to know that the resolution of the images may decrease. During an MRI exam, the magnet that revolves around the patient gives higher quality images because the magnet is able to make a complete rotation. While the images gained from open MRIs are still viable, they may not be of the same resolution as traditional MRIs.
  4. If you don’t want to change the kind of machine used, please speak to your doctor or technologist about taking a sedative prior to the exam. It’s best if your primary care physician prescribed this medication because they have a more comprehensive knowledge of your medical history and other medications you may be taking.
  5. Other options we have for keeping patients comfortable at Doctors Imaging are bringing family members or friends with you to your exam. They may not be able to hold your hand during the entirety of the exam, but many patients find they are comforted by a familiar face.To schedule your medical imaging appointment, please use our online scheduling form or call 504-883-8111.

The Many Benefits of Ultrasounds for Women

Medical imaging is a service that benefits everyone, whether male or female. But there are those who believe that certain procedures are only available for one kind of patients. A majority of people might assume that ultrasound exams are only for women expecting children. Using ultrasound on pregnant women is the dominant use. But there are several other healing and life-saving capabilities that ultrasounds provide.

Ultrasounds use a combination of sound waves and computer technology in order to create internal images that doctors and patients seek. Ultrasounds are the best form of medical imaging for expectant mothers because ultrasounds are non-invasive and do not have the concern of radiation. Mothers can see their baby’s outline, hear their heartbeat and determine their child’s health. In essence, ultrasounds are a way of providing information and peace of mind to both men and women.

Excluding pregnancy, what other incidents are ultrasounds the preferred method of imaging? Ultrasounds are often used as a preliminary method of imaging. This means that when doctors suspect a problem and think that it is an area that the ultrasound will be able to view, they will use this method first because ultrasounds aren’t invasive or have side effects. Ultrasounds examine the internal organs, tissues and blood flow throughout the body, determining the blood flow through the heart, imaging breast tissue and guiding biopsy needles.

Almost any part of the body can undergo an ultrasound exam which makes it a faithful go-to for doctors. Ultrasounds are also the oldest form of medical imaging, having proved its benefits long ago. A major benefit that ultrasounds can provide for women is helping women determine their possibility of heart attack or stroke. Both of these conditions occur when the blood flow to the brain or heart are blocked. By using ultrasound technology, doctors can hear problems like weak valves, blockages, and murmurs. Heart disease is the leading cause of death around the world and the highest killer of women around the world. The best way to combat this statistic, besides better health, diet, and exercise, is to have regularly scheduled check-ups with your primary care physician. As you get older, your doctor will likely recommend several kinds of tests to determine your cardiac health, so don’t forget to sign up for a cardiac ultrasound.

Even more beneficial, with the advent of digital ultrasounds, patients now have access to high-quality ultrasounds. 3D and 4D ultrasounds allow patients to see their babies or bodies in higher definition and even see movement. The ability to see movement is particularly beneficial for those women concerned with their cardiac health as the movement of blood will be the biggest indicator of that problem.

Technician uses handheld ultrasound device on a woman's breast.

Ultrasound can be used for breast cancer screenings and for diagnostic imaging when a doctor wants more information about tissue of concern.

Ultrasound has a valuable use in supplemental breast cancer screening. Many studies have shown that ultrasound can help supplement a mammogram by detecting breast cancers that may not be visible with a mammogram. Ultrasound is not intended to replace a mammogram. Rather, they are used in conjunction with mammograms as needed. Women should consult with their doctor or radiologist to determine if ultrasound screening is appropriate for them.

Ultrasound of the breast may be used for women who are at high risk for breast cancer or women who are pregnant and should not be exposed to x-rays used in a mammogram. Ultrasound of the breast can also be used to screen women who have dense breast tissue, meaning there are a lot of ducts, glands, fibrous tissue and less fat making it harder to find cancers with a mammogram.

Doctors Imaging in Metairie has the best technology in ultrasound and for an affordable price available through various insurances. If you have other questions or concerns about scheduling an ultrasound appointment, please contact Doctors Imaging at 504-883-8111.

The Dangers of Sleep Deprivation and Insomnia

When we are babies, we spend about 16 to 17 hours a day just sleeping. Our brains are developing at a quick rate and we need sleep to help facilitate this rapid growth. We take a nap during the day until we reach elementary school age because we are still transitioning out of our infantile sleep cycles. Forgoing these naps usually results in mood disruptions and “crankiness”.  As we get older, the naps become intermittent but the danger of sleep deprivation is still a reality.

Sleep is the body’s biological healing system and is critical to healthy brain function. When we are teenagers, we spend the weekends sleeping until the early afternoon hours but as we get older the responsibilities and commitments of life take over, sleep becomes a precious commodity. That isn’t just a quirk of the generations, our bodies are biologically programmed for different sleep cycles at different points in our lives. Let’s discuss the benefits of proper sleeping schedules and the dangers of sleep deprivation and the damage of insomnia.

Sleep deprivation encompasses a number of symptoms. It might the student working part-time and staying up late at night to study. It could be the single mother working graveyard shifts and inhaling caffeine to stay awake. It could be the overworked doctor, short-staffed and busy, forgoing steady sleep for the sake of the patients. It might be the laid-off father tossing and turning all night thinking about the future. Sleep deprivation happens for a number of reasons and can affect anyone, but the effects can be severe if not treated.

Sleep deprivation affects almost every function of the body: cognitive, vision, digestion, and respiration, all of it because our bodies need sleep. Sleep is when our body does internal repairs. The brain needs to dream in order to filter and clean out the neurological clutter that fills our minds throughout the day. Sleep is necessary for the body to repair tissues and muscles, synthesize hormones and rejuvenate the brain. Lack of sleep can lead to “activation of the sympathetic nervous system, which can lead to a rise in blood pressure and an increase in cortisol secretion” both of these reactions are harmful to the body and the mind.

Thanks to research regarding the benefits of sleep, we can better understand the dangers of insomnia. Insomnia is more than just losing a few hours of sleep because your busy schedule can’t allow it, insomnia is a mental condition in which the mind cannot seem to transition from active mode to sleep mode. Insomnia affects as much as 20% of American adults. Not only does insomnia make the sufferer feel terrible and tired, but it can also lead to a host of health problems such as obesity and diabetes. Medications and therapies like hypnotherapy, meditation, and sleep training can help in some cases.

Complications of Insomnia

Research has shown that insomnia can be caused by a number of reasons: genetic history, allergies, gastrointestinal conditions, neurological conditions, medication and stress. Conditions like sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome and depression are contributed to the insomniac brain. MRI research of insomniac patients reveals that their ability to “modulate brain function and development including gene expression, protein translation and memory function.” These studies help to educate both physicians and patients about the danger of sleep deprivation and hopefully, find more remedies for the sleepless.

Understanding sleep disorders requires medical attention but there are over the counter and holistic approaches that have been shown to improve sleep quality. Working together with your physician to find the right formula is crucial in your mental and physical health. Furthermore, for those that regularly forgo sleep, remember that you are only doing yourself and your work a disservice. Sleep is a necessary function that needs to be regulated and maintained.

For more information about our MRI capabilities for sleeplessness or other conditions, contact Doctors Imaging in Metairie. Our offices are open Monday through Friday 8.30 am- 5 pm and open on Saturdays from 9-12. You can call our office at 504-883-8111 or fill out our Request an Appointment Form on our site.

What are the Warning Signs of Heart Attack and Stroke?

Heart disease and stroke are two of the leading causes of death in the world, killing over 800,000 people annually in the United States. With the amount of people dying from these conditions, do enough people know what the warning signs are? There are certainly things to look for, but if you aren’t paying attention, they can come at any time. Not paying attention puts your life on the line.

Hopefully you have been diligent with your yearly check-ups, and will know if you have conditions like high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Those will indicate to you your predisposition for heart attack or stroke. Find out what the warning signs are for heart attack or stroke are so that you can eliminate possible causes or have a plan in case of emergency.

Signs of Heart Attack:

Known medically as a myocardial infarction, a heart attack can strike at any moment, but by knowing the warning signs, you can find help before your life is in danger.

  • Initial chest discomfort and pressure often described “like an elephant sitting on your chest,” pressure, squeezing, a feeling of fullness or pain will usually be one of the first signs.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the body such as the arms, neck, shoulders, jaw, and stomach is a sign of a possible blockage.
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty catching one’s breath
  • Numbing feeling in the left arm is a typical symptom of a looming heart attack.
  • Cold sweats or sweating in days previous. Many heart attack victims describe profuse sweating during sleep in the days leading up to the event.
  • Nausea or vomiting are common symptoms of an imminent heart attack in women. Men typically suffer from indigestion leading up to a heart attack and usually write it off as heartburn.

Many people attribute the symptoms as another problem without realizing the danger they are in. If you think that you are experiencing a heart attack, call 911 immediately and if possible, take one aspirin. Aspirin can help ease blood flow to the heart and hopefully add a few extra minutes for emergency personnel to arrive to take you to the hospital for medical treatment.

Signs of Stroke:

There are two kinds of strokes that can occur: an ischemic stroke happens when there is a blood clot in the brain that stops blood flow and a hemorrhagic stroke that occurs when a blood vessel in the brain has burst causing pressure and internal bleeding. If you are unsure, use the F-A-S-T system for determining if you or a loved one is having a stroke.

  • F:   Face- Is there facial drooping or the inability to control facial movements?
  • A:   Arms- Is the person unable to raise or keep their arms raised above their head?
  • S:  Speech- Is the person having a slurred or strange speech or trouble communicating?
  • T:   Time- Keep track of when these symptoms appear for your doctor, but call 911 immediately.

Some stroke victims also report symptoms such as trouble seeing out of one eye, coordination loss and sudden, and incurable headache. By seeking medical treatment as soon as possible, you can stop the damaging effects of stroke from being permanent.

Wondering what your heart health is truly like? A Calcium Score (Heart Scan) and Carotic Ultrasound from the radiologists at Doctors Imaging could provide you and your doctor with preventive information that can save your life. To schedule your appointment today, either fill out our online form or call 504-883-8111.

Do You Have Concussion Symptoms?

Concussions (Mild Traumatic Brain Injury or mTBI) have long been a mysterious and worrying injury for doctors to examine. Concussion symptoms can range anywhere from unconsciousness to memory loss to a slight headache. There is such a range of symptoms that it can be a difficult task for physicians to medically diagnose a concussion.

Concussions are unusual for most people but for athletes, some workers, and extreme sports enthusiasts, a concussion is just part of the territory. The problem with this is that as more research is being done on the long-term effects of concussions on professional athletes, we are learning that these bumps on the noggin can have a much deeper consequence. Any kind of traumatic brain injury is cause for concern but now Doctors Imaging has a beneficial new technology that can help determine the degree of brain injury and nerve damage due to a concussion. It’s called Diffusion Tensor Imaging or DTI/MRI.

Doctors Imaging was the first to introduce New Orleans to a 3.0T MRI and we added Diffusion Tensor Imaging to our list of services in 2016. Where standard MRIs are well-equipped to obtain useful and comprehensive images of brain tissue, DTI is an advanced form of MRI technology that improves diagnostic practices, particularly in the diagnosis and recovery of concussions.

Where most MRIs can tell if there is tissue damage or bleeding, DTI capabilities are able to explore the possibility of nerve damage in very specific areas of the brain’s white matter. Along with internal bleeding, nerve damage is the primary concern for physicians when dealing with a concussed patient. If you were to look at former football players or boxers, you notice that they have a higher prevalence of Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, ALS (Lou Gherig’s Disease) and other neurological disorders as they age, and many believe this is from repeated exposure to head and back trauma. DTI MRIs are able to focus on the connecting circuits of the brain and localize nerve damage. By recognizing this nerve damage, doctors can keep a close eye on their patient and help them during the recovery from their injury.

One side effect that most doctors are very concerned about when they are seeing a concussed patient is an axonal injury. Axonal injury is when a brain injury occurs that causes extensive lesions in the white matter tracts in a widespread or localized area. Diffuse axonal injury (DAI) is so worrying because it can be indicative of long-term brain deficiency. DAI occurs in almost half of all concussion cases and now with this kind of advanced MRI technology, doctors will be able to make diagnoses and recoveries easier and more beneficial.

Like other MRIs, DTI does not use radiation, is non-invasive and has extremely high success rates. So if you or someone you know has concussion symptoms, be sure to give Doctors Imaging a call and make your DTI appointment made. If you have more questions or would like to speak to a representative at Doctors Imaging, feel free to call at 504-883-8111.