The Swift County – Benson Hospital Radiology Department is staffed with highly skilled technologists.

At SCBH, we provide the following diagnostic services:

SCBH offers 24-hour digital X-ray on-site services. A digital X-ray system uses computers to record and store images rather than film. This allows for faster and less expensive processing of the image and it allows the image to be read by the radiologist quicker than reading off film. The images are then sent to the physician electronically for faster viewing and diagnosis. An order from a physician is required for an X-ray to be done.

SCBH offers 24-hour CT scan on-site services. CT scan, also called Computerized Tomography and CAT scan, is an X-ray technique that produces more detailed images of internal organs than conventional X-ray exams. CT’s produce two-dimensional images, using a sensing unit, which rotates around your body and a large computer to create cross-sectional images of the inside of your body.

Procedure
CT scans typically take between 10-25 minutes; the length of the exam depends on the type of scans your doctor has ordered. Depending on symptoms and type of scan ordered, you may need to receive an oral or intravenous (IV) contrast solution to aid in detecting specific problems. The contrast solution improves the visibility in areas of the body and is usually administered by mouth and/or IV line. To begin the procedure, you will lie on a movable scanning table that slides in and out of a tunnel. Once the exam is over, you can resume your regular routine.

SCBH offers Screening digital Mammogram service Monday-Friday 7:30 am t 5:00 p.m. Safe and effective, mammograms are the single most important method for early detection of breast cancer. Digital mammography is the new standard and replaces film imaging mammography because it is more sensitive in detecting abnormalities, especially in younger women and women with denser breast tissue. The radiologist is able to magnify and manipulate images on a computer screen for enhanced views, something that cannot be done with X-ray film. Digital mammography also has a lower radiation dose to the breast, compared to film/screen mammography. Radiologists review mammography images looking for subtle changes in the tissue. Using computer-assisted technology they may also note other abnormalities such as cysts, suspicious masses or micro calcifications – tiny flecks of calcium like grains of salt – that can sometimes indicate the onset of breast cancer. The radiologist also will compare your mammogram with previous ones to note any changes. Most women’s breast tissue has natural lumps, cysts and nodules, they are not uncommon. Not all solid nodules are cancerous-generally 80 percent are benign. However, further tests, such as a diagnostic mammogram and an ultrasound, may be recommended to rule out problems.

Procedure
You will be given a gown and asked to undress from the waist up, removing jewelry or other items that may interfere with imaging. Do not use antiperspirants, powders, lotions or perfumes under your arms or on your breasts the day of your screening. These could be visible on your mammogram and produce false results. A technologist will position one breast at a time on a lower plate, and an upper plate will compress the breast. Pressure is applied for a few seconds to flatten the breast, allowing for efficient x-ray penetration. You may find the pressure uncomfortable, but some women experience no discomfort at all.

How often should I have a mammogram?
The National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society recommend annual mammograms for women over 40. Annual mammograms and clinical breast exams combined with monthly self-exams are the most effective method for detecting breast cancer. If you feel a lump or have nipple discharge or breast pain, call your doctor immediately. Scheduling a digital screening mammogram does not require a physician referral, so don’t put it off. Take responsibility for your well-being and be your own best health advocate.

  • To schedule your physical and mammogram call 320-843-2030
  • To schedule your mammogram only: Call 320-314-1551

WALK-IN MAMMOGRAMS

  • Walk-in mammograms are screening mammograms, not diagnostic. These are not for patients whose doctor has referred them due to specific concerns regarding your breast health, or you have symptoms such as lumps or pain.
  • You’ll need to bring the name of your primary health care physician and make sure it’s been one full year since your last mammogram, to comply with most insurance requirements.
  • Annual mammograms are recommended for women age 40 and up. Those younger with a family history should consult their doctor.

SCBH Offers Walk-In Mammograms Services:
Monday-Friday
7:30 am – 5:00 pm

SCBH offers Ultrasound services during the following times:

Mondays 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Wednesdays 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Fridays 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

We offer complete sonography services including vascular, abdominal and obstetric studies. Ultrasound images are captured in real-time; they can show movement of internal tissues and organs, and enable physicians to see blood flow and heart valve functions. Our registered technologists and ultrasonographers have the highest level of certification.

SCBH offers Echocardiogram services during the following times:

Mondays 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Wednesdays 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Fridays 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Echocardiograms show what is happening in your heart. SCBH offers adult cardiac echocardiography. These ultrasound images help identify abnormalities in the heart muscle and valves, and find any fluid that may surround the heart.

SCBH offers MRI scans on Monday mornings. MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is a safe and painless way for your doctor to examine your organs, tissues and bones. It produces high-resolution images that help diagnose a variety of health problems. Unlike CT scans and x-rays, MRI scans don’t use radiation. It uses powerful magnets and radio waves to scan part of your body and create the images.

Preparation
You do not usually need to do anything special before an MRI. However, since you must remain perfectly still during the scan, your doctor may order sedation to help you relax. If you need sedation, you will be asked to take it about 30 minutes prior to the MRI. Metals can interfere with the quality of the images so you will need to complete a screening questionnaire regarding any safety concerns such as having implanted devices. You will need to remove any objects containing metals prior to the exam, such as belts, jewelry or eyeglasses. However, some types of metal objects, such as braces or dental fillings, don’t interfere with the scan and don’t need to be removed.

Procedure
MRI scans typically take between 25-45 minutes; the length of the exam depends on the type of scans your doctor has ordered. Depending on past surgical history and the type of scans ordered, you may need to receive a contrast solution to aid in detecting a specific problem. The contrast solution improves the visibility in areas of the body and is usually administered through an intravenous (IV) line. To begin the procedure, you will lie on a movable scanning table that slides into a tunnel. The MRI technician will use an intercom system to talk to you and give you instructions during the exam. The MRI makes loud noises as it captures the images. Once the exam is over, you can usually resume your regular routine. If you are given a sedative, it usually wears off within two hours but you will need a driver to take you home and you will be asked not to drive the rest of the day. In most cases, contrast solutions should be out of your system within 24 hours.

SCBH offers on-site Bone Density tests Monday-Friday 7:30 am – 5:00 p.m. A bone density test, sometimes called dexa scan, measures the density of your bones to estimate their strength. Essentially, it’s a measure of the health of your bones. As you age, minerals are constantly being added to and taken away from your bones. When minerals are lost faster than they are added, your bones become lighter, less dense and more porous. This is called osteopenia, a natural process that begins in midlife. It makes your bones weaker and more likely to break. Bone density loss can begin earlier for some people due to heredity and certain medical conditions or treatments. Osteopenia can develop into osteoporosis, a condition in which bones become thin and brittle. It can result in loss of height or a hump back, chronic pain, loss of movement due to bone fractures and/or a higher risk of hip fractures.

Who Should Have One
You doctor can help determine if you should have a bone density scan. They are recommended if you are age 65 or older regardless of risk. If you’re under 65 years of age, you should have a bone density scan if you have one or more of the following risks: Calcium-deficient diet, history of amenorrhea, history of malabsorption, moderate to high alcohol intake, poor nutirition, post-menopausal, prolonged treatment with steroids, certain anti-cancer drugs, thyroid hormone and some anti-seizure medications, significant caffeine consumption, small-boned frame and/or a smoker.

Preparation
A bone density scan requires little preparation. You may eat normally and take medications as prescribed by your doctor the morning of your test. The only restrictions are: avoid taking calcium supplements for at least 24 hours prior to your appointment and you should not have had a barium study, radioisotope injection, oral or intravenous contrast material from a CT scan or MRI within seven days prior to your bone density test.

Procedure
During the bone density scan, you will lay comfortably on a padded table while the bone density unit scans three or more areas, usually the spine and both hips. Unlike typical x-ray machines, radiation exposure during bone densitometry is extremely low. The entire process takes only minutes to complete. It involves no injections or invasive procedures.

SCBH offers Nuclear Medicine testing every other Wednesday. This is a unique specialty that documents organ function and structure. Nuclear Medicine involves the use of radioactive isotopes to prevent, diagnose and treat disease. Specialized technologists in conjunction with board certified radiologists use this service to offer a safe and painless technique to image the body and treat disease.
SCBH offers 24-hour Electrocardiogram (EKG) service. An EKG is an important part of the initial evaluation of a patient who is suspected to have a heart related problem. Small sticky electrodes are applied to the patient’s chest, arms and legs. Wires are used to connect the patient to an EKG machine. The patient will be asked to remain very still while a technician or nurse records the EKG. The electrical activity created by the patient’s heart is processed by the EKG machine and then printed on a special graph paper. This is then interpreted by your physician. It takes a few minutes to apply the EKG electrodes and one minute to make the actual recording. The EKG can provide important information about the patient’s heart rhythm, a previous heart attack, increased thickness of the heart muscle, sign of decreased oxygen delivery to the heart, and problems with conduction of the electrical current from one portion of the heart to another. The EKG is extremely safe and there is no risk involved.

At SCBH we are equipped with a 24-hour teleradiology service.

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