Did you know that St. John Providence Health System offers same-day “Diagnostic Imaging” appointments in several locations across southeast Michigan to serve you and your family?
When your doctor decides that you need a Diagnostic Imaging exam, we will get you an appointment quickly and provide you with high-quality service.
If you have a hectic daytime schedule, we have evening and weekend appointments available.
The services we provide are:
What it is: Quick and painless, X-rays send beams through your body to create images of your body’s structures.
Why the radiologist recommends it: “It’s unlikely anything will ever replace the chest X-ray,” says Roger Gonda Jr., MD, chief of radiology at Providence and Providence Park Hospitals. X-rays excel at diagnosing such lung conditions as pneumonia, tuberculosis and lung cancer, and give the radiologist a peek at bone breaks and arthritis. X-rays are also the gold standard for breast cancer screening (mammography).
Caveats: X-rays involve radiation. However, except in the case of pregnant women, radiation is considered to be so low that testing benefits far outweigh any possible risks. Some people may have a reaction to the imaging contrast used in some types of X-rays.
What it is: Computerized tomography (CT) is actually a series of X-rays, capturing many different views of a certain body part and resulting in detailed, cross-sectional images that can be made three-dimensional.
Why the radiologist recommends it: Unlike MRIs, CT scans can pick up on bleeding in the brain, making them ideal for guiding physicians in stroke treatment. CT scans also provide results much faster than MRI (less than two minutes for the whole body), which is critical for both stroke and trauma patients. Newer scanners are adept at capturing a rapidly beating heart, helping physicians look for signs of heart disease and other problems, Dr. Gonda says.
Caveats: CT scans expose you to much more radiation than traditional X-rays, so they’re usually off-limits for pregnant women; for most others, however, the testing benefits usually outweigh the risks. Radiologists may be able to suggest alternatives for children.
What it is: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) harnesses the power of magnetic fields and radio waves to capture highly detailed images of your organs and tissues.
Why the radiologist recommends it: Because of superior resolution, “MRI is the preferred method of imaging in almost every neurological and neurosurgical condition,” Dr. Gonda says. Other uses of MRI include breast cancer screening, in conjunction with mammography; for staging and treatment of breast cancer; and evaluation of joints and muscles.
Caveats: Some people may feel uncomfortable lying still for almost an hour, Dr. Alcantara says, while others may feel claustrophobic in the tunnel-like scanning device. Having some types of metal in your body (pacemakers, aneurysm clips) may exclude you from this option.
New, roomier MRIs eliminate claustrophobia
For people who are claustrophobic or anxious about having an MRI, or who are larger in size, Open MRI of Michigan in Madison Heights eliminates the closed-in nature of traditional MRI testing. Its brand-new MRI unit is “open” on all four sides and located in a large window-filled room. At Providence Park Hospital in Novi, look for a roomier, quieter MRI to arrive this December. The new unit provides more space between your body and the machine, and allows your head to be free and clear (unless it’s your head being scanned). You’ll even be able to forgo the earplugs normally needed during an MRI test.
What it is: Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to look at organs and other parts of the body.
Why the radiologist recommends it: Ultrasound allows physicians to evaluate a fetus without radiation exposure. It can also diagnose gallbladder disease, look for blood clots in the legs and examine the thyroid gland and pelvis. It’s now also being used to examine joints.
Caveats: There are no known risks of ultrasound. However, sound waves are limited in their use.
What it is: Positron emission tomography (PET) scans use a small dose of radioactive material, called a radiotracer, that’s injected into the body and absorbed by organs and tissues being studied. A special scanner identifies, records and converts information from the radiotracer into three-dimensional images.
Why the radiologist recommends it: PET scans are commonly used to find cancer, brain conditions (such as seizures and tumors) and other problems with the central nervous system. A combination PET/CT scan gives the radiologist additional information, helping him or her detect cancer and gather other key pieces of information, such as where exactly a cancer is located and whether it’s spread, Dr. Alcantara says.
Caveats: There is radiation exposure, although the amount contained in the radiotracer is very low. Risks involving the CT portion of the PET/CT scan are the same as with a traditional CT scan.
4100 River Rd
East China Township, MI 48054.
Hours of operation: Monday - Friday with Saturday appointments available
Phone for appointment: 810-985-1455
Feel claustrophobic or concerned about fitting comfortably in MRI equipment? Advanced MRI offers the only open-bore service in St. Clair County. You’ll no longer feel “nose-to-nose” with the top of the magnet. Many scan types can be completed with your head outside the bore. We serve patients throughout the week and on Saturdays, at either our Fort Gratiot or East China Township location. This service is a partnership between St. John River District Hospital and St. Joseph's Mercy Port Huron.
- Breast MRI
- General Radiology
- Nuclear Medicine
- Interventional Radiology
Safe, High-Quality Service at St. John Providence Health System
- Our equipment is accredited by the American College of Radiology which means you will receive the highest image quality at the lowest radiation dose.
- In addition, our radiologists are board-certified by the American Board of Radiology and our technologists are registered with the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.
- Same-day, evening or weekend appointments available to serve you.
- In many cases we can provide you with same or next-day reports.
It’s easy to schedule an appointment. Just call 866-501-DOCS (3627). We’ll help you find the center closest to you and answer any questions you may have.