How Radiologists Use Advanced Diagnostic Imaging

HealthcareDecember 03, 2013

Advanced diagnostic imaging techniques have significantly helped radiologists to detect cancer, diseases and disorders. This technology helps radiologists to find specific biomarkers, which in turn, allows a diagnosis without the use of biopsies or the need to draw blood. Currently, the technologies are advancing mostly in the field of cancer research, specifically in theranostics, a newer form of diagnostic therapy, which is a key part of personalized medicine.

Personalized Medicine

Personalized medicine is growing in popularity. With the aid of theranostics, it allows doctors to treat a patient specifically for their ailment. This treatment uses diagnostic imaging to find tumor cells, cysts and abnormalities in the metabolic activity of tissue. The more the techniques are recognized and approved by the FDA, the more popular they will become.

Types of Imaging

Positron emission tomography (PET), and ultrasounds and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) are technologies that are used today. Current technologies are used to integrate the companion diagnostic to personalize treatment. Computed tomography (CT), spiral CTs and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are not new technologies, but still widely used. By introducing new types of imaging agents and personalized treatments, new methods are discovered to help radiologists find tumors earlier than before. This new imaging technology will also make it easier for radiologists to do a full body scan and find any possible issues, instead of just looking over a specific area.

End Result

Adding specific molecules to an imaging agent or determining the pharmacokinetic half-life of an antibody are both effective techniques in advanced diagnostic imaging. Endocyte has developed a folate-targeted molecular imaging agent that is currently in Phase 3 in the PROCEED study of vintafolide (EC145). This is to help those with ovarian, kidney and lung cancer.

The need for personal medicine will continue to grow, and with it, so will the need for companion diagnostic imaging. The growing trend in the United States and Europe shows that there is a need to evaluate the research further. Governments, pharmaceutical companies and the science community are all hopping on the proverbial diagnostic wagon. In the long run, diagnostic imaging will help to treat people as individuals based on their specific needs.

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