Northwest Community Hospital has recently acquired state-of-the-art bi-plane angiography technology, which is used in a range of Interventional Radiology procedures.
Evan Oblonsky, MD, an interventional radiologist at NCH, says the the new technology represents a big step forward in providing patients with the best options available.
"It provides dramatically better visualization, and in many cases can cut the time of the procedure in half," he says. "This reduces the amount of radiation and contrast dye needed, which is good for our patients."
Dr. Oblonsky explains that bi-plane angiography, as its name suggests, provides images on two planes at the same time. "For example, we can simultaneously generate images, seen on two separate screens, from the top to bottom and from side to side."
Dr Oblonsky says the new technology has enabled new and improved applications for interventional radiology, including:
- Uterine fibroid embolization. This procedure is an alternative to hysterectomy that selectively blocks the blood supply to the fibroids. The new technology allows it to be done more quickly, and with better visualization.
- Kyphoplasty. This procedure involves treating an acute spinal fracture by adding a cement-like substance within the vertebrae to relieve pain.
- Interventional oncology. Chemoembolization, in which a chemotherapeutic agent is injected into the artery and directed to a tumor or lesion, is greatly improved by bi-plane angiography. This kind of procedure is commonly used in patients with liver cancer.
- Neurological and neurosurgical applications. Bi-plane angiography creates 3-D brain images. It is used in patients with such neurological conditions as aneurysm and arteriovenous malformation to determine the precise location of the abnormality prior to surgery.
- Vascular procedures. Bi-plane angiography improves the care for patients undergoing angioplasty or stent-placement procedures because they can be done in less time and require a lower contrast load.
Dr. Oblonsky points out that the new technology also contains a CT scan feature, which can further enhance a procedure’s effectiveness and decrease imaging and treatment time. "For example, in a chemoembolization, we can perform a CT scan at the same time to confirm that we have reached the precise tissue target. In some cases, this will prevent us from having to perform an additional procedure. It saves time and, most importantly, spares the patient from having to undergo another test."
"The excellent visualization provided, along with the opportunities to reduce radiation amounts and treatment time, make bi-plane angiography a superb resource for Northwest Community physicians and their patients."
Information and photographs used with permission from Northwest Community Hospital