Cardiac Imaging Program to Acquire Upgraded CT and MRI Units in 2020

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Cookeville Regional is proud to announce that 2020 will bring two major additions to its cardiac imaging program, which was expanded in July.

First, in January, CRMC will introduce a new 128-slice CT scanner, an upgrade from the current 64-slice unit.

“The new scanner offers improved resolution and speed,” said Dr. Ashley Nickerson, an imaging cardiologist with Cookeville Regional and Tennessee Heart. “You can think of it like 64 megapixels versus 128 on a camera, or 64 GB versus 128 on your phone.”

The increased speed and detail this unit provides will allow cardiologists to detect and investigate coronary anomalies, diagnose congenital heart disease, perform angiograms to detect clinical and pre-clinical coronary artery disease, perform pulmonary vein mapping, and much more.

Then, in February, the hospital will obtain a new cardiac MRI machine.

“An MRI shows heart structure and function, and with this new unit, there’s no limitation in viewing planes,” said Dr. Nickerson. “You can flip it and spin it and look at any corner of the heart that you want to with no limitations in terms of the patient’s body size or anything of that nature.”

Adding these two pieces of equipment means that CRMC will now have two CT units and two MRI machines, which will greatly decrease wait times for patients needing imaging studies. In addition, the fact that both of the new machines will capture images much more quickly will be very helpful for cardiac patients who are unable to hold their breath for long periods.

And, with these additions, CRMC will have the most advanced cardiac imaging available, close to home.

“Now, there should be no reason for us to send patients anywhere else for a cardiac imaging study,” said Nickerson.

It’s just one more way Cookeville Regional’s heart program is meeting the needs of patients the Upper Cumberland region.