Latest CT Technology To Make Topeka Debut With New Stormont ER

Topeka (WIBW) - When Stormont-Vail HealthCare opens its new emergency department next week, it will be home to the latest technology in CT scanning.

Stormont has invested in what will be the only 128-slice CT scanner in Kansas, Siemens' Somatom Definition. It's so new, the others closest to Topeka are in St. Louis or Omaha.

Dr. TIm Allen of Radiology and Nuclear Medicine says that each time the scanner rotates around the patient, it takes 128 different slices. He says that has advantages as far as speed and the ability to cover a large area at one time.

The 128 slices doubles the 64 slices Stormont's current CT scanner can do. Dr. Allen says added computer power that comes with the new scanner puts the images together more quickly and can form 3-dimensional, even 4-d views.

The images do more than just look cool. Dr. Allen says the new scanner, for the first time, will allow them to take a complete image of the brain at once. He says that will offer a major advantage in diagnosing and treating stroke patients because they'll be able to see which areas of the brain have blood flow and which may be obstructed or have dead tissue.

Plus, he says the faster speed make the scanner better able to capture good images of faster heart rates. He says currently patients are given medication to slow their heart rate for CT scans. The new scanner will allow them to use less medicine. In addition, he says, in some patients, doctors are unable to slow the heartbeat enough and a good image wasn't possible. The new scanner will give them a better exam of someone with a more rapid heart beat.

The new scanner's location is also ideal. It's directly across the hall from the new emergency department's trauma room. Dr. Allen says having it there will be a big advantage in patients who are are unstable. He says the trauma staff and trauma surgeons will be nearby to assist.

Among it's other advantages, the scanner opening is larger and the table is able to accommodate a heavier weight. Plus, patients are exposed to less radiation.

The public can see the scanner and the rest of Stormont's new emergency department at a public open house from 5 to 8 pm, June 17th. It's at the corner of SW 8th and Washburn.


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