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Updated: July 8th, 2008 05:26 PM CDT

Emerging Fusion Technologies Poised to Change Diagnostic Imaging

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LONDON , January 9 /PRNewswire/ -- New technological advances in diagnostic imaging have resulted in a highly sophisticated technique called fusion imaging that uses special software to combine both anatomical and functional images. This novel technique provides previously unattainable levels of precision in detecting numerous conditions such as tumours, Alzheimer's disease and neural disorders.

"Hybrid imaging modalities such as positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) and single photon emission computed tomography/CT(SPECT/CT) are revolutionising the field of diagnostic imaging," notes Technical Insights (http://technicalinsights.frost.com) Research Analyst Preethi Vaidyanathan. "Several PET/CT devices with different features have already been introduced and are available commercially."

Combined PET/CT delivers better results than PET or CT, because it offers more accurate localisation of flurodeoxyglucose (FDG) uptake, distinguis hespathological from physical uptake and enables improved monitoring treatment.

Other significant advantages of PET/CT imaging include better diagnostic accuracy, treatment planning and response evaluation as well as enhanced guided biopsy methods. This imaging modality is particularly useful for new indications and applications that cannot be satisfactorily performed with individual PET or CT and retrospective image alignment.

Combined SPECT with high-powered CT scanners are finding application in multiple new research and clinical arenas such as in vivo small animal studies and CT angiography in the emergency department. Researchers are already investigating several new tracers specifically to target cancers of the brain, thyroid, prostate, breast, lung, ovaries, kidneys, and liver as well as diseases of the heart and bones.

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