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'Radiology plays key role in Covid diagnosis'

Dr Rupa Ananthasivan, Consultant – Radiology, Manipal Hospitals
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Dr Rupa Ananthasivan, Consultant – Radiology, Manipal Hospitals

Highlights

Service to Covid-19 patients was declared as the motto of this year’s International Day of Radiology 2020. It’s dedicated to the imaging professionals and their role in Covid-19 diagnosis.

Service to Covid-19 patients was declared as the motto of this year's International Day of Radiology 2020. It's dedicated to the imaging professionals and their role in Covid-19 diagnosis.

Asked how radiology is helping save lives of coronavirus patients, Dr Sudarshan Rawat, HOD & Consultant – Radiology, Manipal Hospitals, Old Airport Road, says, "Early diagnosis of the diseases is made possible when RT PCR test result is regarded as high clinical suspicion."

"The reported imaging features in Covid-19 evidence suggests that initial chest CT scan imaging will show abnormality in at least 85% of patients, with 75% of patients having bilateral lung involvement. They help in suggesting disease severity, progressive consolidation has poorer prognosis, and similarly high rate of acute respiratory distress syndrome in patients with Covid-19 pneumonia carries high mortality," Rawat adds.

"Signalling suspicion of a secondary infection, bacterial co-infection with swine flu and pneumonia. Such infections were associated with serious outcomes. Besides the acute phase, CT is recommended for follow-up in individuals who are recovering from the virus to evaluate long-term or permanent lung damage including fibrosis, as is seen with ARDS, also with SARS and MERS infections," he explains.

Talking about the future of radiology, Rawat said the world of radiology is changing.

"It is now too broad and complex for an individual to remain a comprehensive provider, radiologists need to be clinicians and group themselves as subspecialists in particular body parts with the aim of providing a high-quality service and add value to the chain of healthcare. Radiologists in the teaching hospitals also need to specialise to a higher degree in order to provide a tertiary referral service, communicate and advise clinical experts and to conduct and drive imaging research as true experts in their field," he opines.

Explaining the difference between radiation therapy and radiology and the importance of Artificial Intelligence, Dr Abha Verma, Consultant – Radiology, Manipal Hospitals, Whitefield states radiation therapy is radiation given for cancers. "Radiation therapy is a treatment for cancer. Radiology has different modalities for imaging the patient. Pet CT and pet MRI are all part of radiology. Artificial intelligence is the main thing in future. Artificial intelligence means computers will detect and find abnormalities in CT and MRI, basically what humans do, stress on AI in future innovation."

Giving a detailed explanation on the importance of radiology in emergencies, Dr Rupa Ananthasivan, Consultant – Radiology, Manipal Hospitals, Old Airport Road, said "Abdominal pain is a very common emergency. Radiology (USg or CT ) helps identify the cause . The patient then can be treated medically or surgically depending on the cause. During bleeding during pregnancy ultrasound helps assess the cause of bleeding and wellbeing of the fetus. In a stroke- MRI/ CT helps assess the cause and next mode of treatment. Interventional Radiologists help open blocked vessels (angioplasty) or arrest bleeding from damaged vessels (embolisation)."

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