A lot has happened in the gradual evolution of medical imaging technology. 119 years ago, a German scholar discovered the X-ray. The initial 50 years of radiology examinations involved a patient holding a cassette for up to 10-15 minutes while a radiologist carefully aimed the X-rays at his/her body. Thankfully due to the technology and innovations, today the same process takes milliseconds and is coupled with higher quality and significantly lower radiation doses. So over the course of time how the technology evolved, lets take a look.
Evolution of the X-ray
The invention of the x-ray in 1895 was one of the most transformative medical breakthroughs in the history of medicine. It ushered a new era in human body examination. It allowed physicians to view the inside of a living human body, without the use of a scalpel or other surgical procedures to diagnose diseases. The x-ray opened up the medical world of the allowing us to understand the structure of the molecules of which we are made of. Today x-ray is used in all sorts of imaging techniques, Digital Radiography, Computed Radiography, C-Arms, Cardiac Angiography and many more.
Evolution of the CT scan
Computed Tomography or CT was first introduced to medical practice by Godfrey Hounsfield in 1971. It is more than forty years since the date, which means CT has seen a lot of technological evolution. The initial CT scanner had a scan time of 9 days, a 2.5 hours reconstruction period, 2 hours image print time and an image resolution of 80X80. These specs would make many patients less excited today. Today CT scanning have become so fast and advanced that a whole body scan can be performed in a matter of seconds. The options and protocols available today include complex aspects such as CT Angio, Calcium Scoring, Dental just to name a few.
Evolution of MRI
Magnetic Resonance Imaging has seen numerous evolution since the first MRI image was created in 1952. MRI offers a more precise view of human body tissues; helping physicians make an informed decision on medical matters. Today MRI is being integrated into cancer treatments; cancer centers are investing in a new technology that combines positron emission tomography for diagnosis and treatment of cancer.
Medical imaging has come a long way since its early days, and it is safe to say that the future is bright as more innovations are made in the field of Medical Imaging.