Radiology is a medical specialty that uses imaging to get pictures of the inside of your body. These pictures are then used to diagnose or treat an illness, track an existing illness, or to provide a physician with visual guidance during a procedure. Imaging often eliminates the need for exploratory surgery by providing doctors with an accurate diagnosis.
Computed tomography (CT) scans, positron emission tomography (PET) scans, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), mammography, bone density screenings, ultrasound, fluoroscopy, and X-rays are some of the sophisticated imaging technologies your medical team at UT Southwestern Medical Center might use.
To create an image, different types of energy is directed into your body to create the images. The energy is returned and the images can be viewed either on film or a computer monitor. You can’t feel the energy that enters your body, and it doesn’t leave any marks. For some tests, you may need to drink, inhale, or be injected with a contrasting agent, or dye, to enhance the images.
Imaging is noninvasive and usually painless, though some tests may require you to be very still for a few minutes. Some radiology tests also use low doses of radiation. While the use of radiation can be a concern, the associated risks are outweighed by the information the tests provide to doctors and patients.
Our staff is able to perform the testing and interpret and deliver the results to you and your doctor usually the same day. This quick diagnosis can help detect diseases in early stages and allows you and your doctor to begin treatments as soon as possible.
UT Southwestern provides patients with the most advanced imaging services at all of our hospitals and clinics. Our Department of Radiology also is engaged in research in basic science and clinical settings. Clinical outcomes, new contrast agents, and advances in cancer imaging take place in the hospital setting and in independent laboratories.