In this post, our Ottawa radiologists list imaging tests that assist OBS/GYNs, physicians and other doctors who offer gynecology services in assessing, diagnosing and treating patients.
What are gynecological imaging tests?
At Premier Imaging, we offer several gynecology tests and procedures for women with various conditions and health requirements. These important medical screenings can help your doctor assess your health and may help to determine whether you require gynecologic surgery or other forms of treatment.
These tests and exams include:
Bone Density Tests & Studies
A bone mineral density test (also called a bone density test) measures how many grams of calcium and other bone materials are in a certain portion of bone. This reveals how strong your bones are and evaluates your risk for osteoporosis. The test also allows us to assess bone loss and diagnose osteoporosis in older patients.
All women and men aged 65 and older should have this test done, as should younger people under 50 if they have any conditions associated with bone loss or low bone mass.
To perform this test, the technologist will use an X-Ray detector to scan your hip, spine or forearm. Additional diagnostic tests or treatment may be required.
First-trimester screening can help us detect whether your baby may potentially be at risk for specific chromosomal conditions such as Edwards Syndrome (trisomy 18) or Down Syndrome. Also known as a first-trimester combined test, the assessment involves taking an ultrasound exam and a blood test.
The test can be done earlier than most other prenatal screening tests and offers a valuable assessment of the viability, anatomy and growth of a fetus. It allows you and your healthcare team to have more time to make informed, proactive decisions about the course of your pregnancy.
This is just a screening tool, so any abnormal results will be followed up with more diagnostic tests that will enable you and your team to create a treatment and management plan for any conditions before, during and after delivery.
This non-invasive procedure is a potentially life-saving test that can help screen for and detect breast cancer early. Women should have a mammogram annually starting at age 40.
A technologist will use a specially designed digital X-Ray machine with a high-resolution camera to capture digital images, so any abnormalities or masses such as lumps can be detected before they would be discovered with a physical examination. At this stage, cancer can still be treated effectively in its early stages.
One breast at a time is placed between two plates attached to the machine and two images are taken from each breast. The test usually takes about 20 minutes.
A 3D ultrasound offers you and your healthcare team a clearer, sharper and highly detailed view of your growing baby, soft tissues and organs than the standard 2D version of this exam. This non-compulsory test can also be used for breast imaging and other applications.
A transducer will be moved back and forth over the area to be examined as sound waves bounce off internal tissues before they are fed back through the transducer to the computer, which converts data to images that are displayed on the monitor. 3D ultrasounds typically take 15 to 30 minutes. Most tests are painless, quick and easily tolerable.
An obstetrical ultrasound allows us to confirm pregnancy and examine the embryo or fetus in the womb of a pregnant woman. In addition, we will be able to see the ovaries and uterus.
With this test, we can establish that a living embryo or fetus is growing, estimate the length of pregnancy so far and learn other valuable information about the pregnancy and developing fetus, such as whether the fetus has congenital abnormalities.
During the test, sound waves are transmitted through the skin. The waves are recorded as they echo back and are instantly measured by a computer, then displayed on the monitor in real-time. The exam typically takes 45 to 60 minutes.
Saline Infusion & Tubal Patency
A saline infusion and tubal patency test can often bring women who are experiencing infertility issues accurate, clear answers. Saline infusion sonography (SIS) allows us to look into fertility problems, analyze tubal patency in infertile patients, and assess the position and size of the cervix and uterine cavity.
A tubal patency study can help us answer questions around why a woman may be having challenges with conception. Saline solution is passed through the fallopian tubes so we can use ultrasound to see whether the tubes are “open” or patent. An ultrasound and tubal patency study takes about 30 to 40 minutes.
Your doctor may also recommend SIS if you suffer from heavy, irregular or post-menopausal bleeding, or have had abnormal ultrasound results. If any further diagnostic testing is needed after this appointment, your doctor will follow up.