Spire Bushey Hospital in Hertfordshire has taken delivery of the first private sector SOMATOM® Definition Flash from Siemens Healthcare. The installation marks the first phase of a multi-million pound development to offer new services to patients. The scanner replaces a visiting mobile unit that was available three times a week so that patients now have access to a state-of-the-art, permanent on-site scanning facility.
The SOMATOM Definition Flash is a new generation of Dual Source CT that requires only a fraction of the radiation dose usually required to scan even the smallest anatomical details at a faster speed than ever before. Due to its scanning speed, the system can also perform examinations in the sub millisievert (mSv) range, meaning the heart can be examined at a radiation exposure level that is three times lower than the background radiation a person naturally absorbs in a year.
Spire Bushey Hospital already offers an advanced Cardiac Centre and the Definition Flash will extend the number and types of procedures currently provided to include CT guided coronary angiograms. The CT can perform a scan of the entire heart in just 250 milliseconds, less than half a heart beat. It can also image hearts with a fast pulse or an irregular beat so a non-invasive test can be performed without using beta blockers.
The system will play a large part in the planning of radiotherapy for patients at the new CancerPartnersUK Image Guided Radiotherapy Centre in Elstree, which is due to open in 2010. In partnership with Spire Bushey Hospital, the centre will provide image guided radiotherapy and chemotherapy to patients whose treatment will be tailored following detailed scans from the Definition Flash.
With a new level of image quality, the Definition Flash offers increased contrast without having to apply the higher radiation dose previously required. This will ensure that patients receive low dose scans that still deliver a high quality image.
“These are exciting times at Spire Bushey Hospital,” said Andrew Gore, Hospital Director at Spire Bushey. “The CT development is one of the first phases of a significant hospital-wide project that extends to July 2010. Spire Healthcare has shown huge commitment to the Bushey site and the local community by providing modern, state-of-the-art facilities that will provide benefits to all patients for many years to come. Everyone associated with the hospital is very excited by these developments and looks forward to the introduction of these superb facilities and services.”
“As part of a major development at Spire Bushey Hospital, the CT will obtain images quickly at the lowest possible dose, which will provide huge advantages for both the Cardiac Centre and radiotherapy treatment planning,” said Andreas Hadjiphanis, Regional Sales Manager at Siemens Healthcare. “Setting new standards for both speed and image quality, we look forward to seeing the benefits the Definition Flash provides to one of Spire Healthcare’s flagship hospitals.”