Important Info on Medical Scans for Patients

Most major treatment decisions in healthcare today are made using the added diagnostic value provided by medical scans.

Yet so often when a patient has a medical scan performed in one location, and then get’s referred to another outside healthcare provider, the imaging results are unavailable at the next point of care and a repeat medical scan occurs.

These duplicative tests create additional costs on the healthcare system, and just as importantly pose a safety issue as they can expose patients to unnecessary, harmful ionizing radiation.

ImageInbox eliminates these duplicative tests and ensures the full-resolution medical images are available for treatment decision-making.

A recent article by health.com covered in both ABC News and TIME magazine provides important information for patients to better understand medical imaging procedures, and the value of securely saving their medical images and reports with ImageInbox.

Advances in medical imaging scans, like computed tomography (CT), can “detect differences between normal and abnormal tissue about 1,000 times better than a traditional X-ray,” according to Richard Morin, PhD, professor of radiologic physics at the Mayo Clinic, as quoted in the article.

Because of this advanced ability for doctors to peer into the human body, imaging exams have become a medical necessity for diagnosing all various health problems. Important for patients to understand however, is that while the benefits almost always outweigh the risks, there is the potential for negative consequences with certain medical imaging tests.

As indicated by the article’s title, “The Hidden Dangers of Medical Scans,” some medical exams like X-rays, CT scans, and mammograms, use so-called ionizing radiation. This type of radiation has been well studied and over time shown to damage cells.

As the article states, “the actual danger to an individual receiving a scan (or even two or three) is relatively low.“ But that said there are guidelines for appropriate medical radiation use and the article finishes with -
5 Questions patients should ask before having a scan

As more and more patients are having medical scans performed, as evidenced by the 76 million CT scans performed in 2013 as compared to the 3 million performed in 1980, it is important for patients to have control over their imaging records to be informed when consulting with their doctors about the right decisions for them and their family members.