Computed Tomography (CT Scan)
CT (computed tomography) of the abdomen and pelvis is performed for evaluation of abdominal diseases. This radiologic test or scan can be performed with or without contrast. Most patients receive an injection of iodinated contrast during the test. The contrast agent highlights abdominal structures and helps with the identification of abdominal diseases. CT scans performed for certain reasons (like renal stones) do not require contrast injection. Patients should alert the physician if they have had an allergic reaction to iodinated contrast agents in the past. If so, a patient would need to take a premedication regimen consisting of steroid and benadryl (starting the night before) to decrease chance of repeat allergic reaction. Shellfish allergy does not increase risk of allergic reaction with iodinated contrast and does not require premedication. Patients should not eat any solid food for five hours prior to the CT, although clear fluids are okay up to one hour before the study.
As part of a leading academic medical center, UAB Radiology oversees or participates in clinical trials that may provide new opportunities for low-dose drugs, more effective tests, and other new techniques and treatments that are not available elsewhere in the area. The extensive experience and expertise of our radiologists and technologists help ensure that the most accurate and in-depth testing is used in evaluating and treating your condition. We use the latest interventional devices and most advanced imaging techniques, including fluoroscopy, ultrasound, sonogram, and CT (computed tomography) scans. We perform an average of 7,600 CT scans and 3,600 sonograms each month, all while making your comfort and convenience our top priority. Our efficient, attentive staff and the availability of multiple imaging units will help your radiology visit go smoothly.
As a large teaching hospital, UAB Medicine is on the forefront of imaging equipment, and we frequently play a role in improving traditional and emerging imaging technologies, including some designed to reduce radiation exposure during tests. One example is the GE Healthcare CT 750 HD CT scanner, which is used at the UAB Radiology clinic to obtain high-definition images while reducing patients’ radiation exposure.
Premature Ventricular Contraction
Premature ventricular contraction, or PVC, is a condition that causes an extra heartbeat or an abnormal heartbeat that occurs earlier than it should. This abnormality originates in the two lower chambers of the heart (the ventricles), but it also may occur in the upper chambers of the heart (the atria). Premature ventricular contraction often manifests as an additional heartbeat, followed by a pause then a stronger, quicker heartbeat. It may be described as a flutter, or the heart skipping a beat.
Premature ventricular contractions are very common in all age groups, and most people will experience them at some point in their lives. For normal, healthy people, the occasional period of premature ventricular contractions is no need for concern and typically does not require treatment. For those with an underlying health condition, such as heart disease, premature ventricular contractions may cause additional problems or be indicative of worsening conditions. PVC may be brought on by something as simple as excess caffeine, a change in the body's electrolytes, or medicines such as albuterol. More serious health conditions, such as pneumonia or COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), could trigger PVC as a result of having too little oxygen in the blood.
UAB is an active participant in research and clinical trials. We encourage you to speak to your physician about research and clinical trial options and browse the link below for more information.View Clinical Trials