Radiology Screening

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

At SCBHS, we provide the following diagnostic services:

SCBHS offers PET/CT testing every fourth Friday, more often if needed. A positron emission tomography (PET) scan is an imaging test that helps reveal how your tissues and organs are functioning. A PET scan uses a radioactive tracer to show this activity. The tracer is injected intravenously. The tracer collects in areas of your body that have higher levels of chemical activity, which often correspond to areas of disease. On a PET scan, these areas show up as bright spots. A PET scan is useful in revealing or re-staging of cancers. A combined PET/CT scan enables your doctor to better diagnose illness, treat and assess your condition by taking cross-section images of the area being scanned.

SCBHS 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.

SCBHS 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.

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.

3D Mammography


Swift County-Benson Health Services offers Screening Mammogram service Monday-Friday 8:30 am to 5:00 p.m. Safe and effective, mammograms are the single most important method for early detection of breast cancer. SCBHS is pleased to provide Digital 2D and 3D Mammograms.

Tomosynthesis (tomo or 3D) Mammogram

Tomosynthesis, also known as tomo or 3D, is an advanced type of mammogram that uses the same x-ray technology as


standard 2D mammograms. In tomo (3D) exams, the camera moves in an arc over the breast, taking images from various angles. This type of exam provides images of breast tissue in layers, making it easier to find abnormalities and decreases the chance for additional imaging or testing. A tomo (3D) exam is more accurate for women of all ages, with a higher cancer detection rate. It is recommended for women with dense breast tissue; however, it is beneficial regardless of breast density. Tomo (3D) mammograms are available at Swift County-Benson Health Services. If you would like your annual screening mammogram to include tomo, please request 3D when scheduling your appointment. If you have questions on whether your insurance covers the 3D Tomo screening mammogram, please take the time now to call the number on the back of your insurance card. If your insurance company does not cover the additional charge for 3D mammography, the amount owed will be your responsibility. This would include charges from SCBHS and Midwest Radiology. Because of the variations in plan coverages and deductibles, we are unable to provide price quotes on 3D charges.

What happens during your exam?

During your exam, a specially trained breast imaging technologist will assist in positioning your breast on a platform on the mammography unit. The technologist adjusts the mammography unit to gradually compress the breast. While your breast is compressed, the technologist quickly walks behind a glass partition to take the picture. You will be asked to remain still for a few seconds as the image is captured. Your breast will only be in compression for a few seconds. You will feel pressure on your breast as it is compressed. Although breast compression may cause discomfort, you should not experience significant pain. Inform the technologist if you do experience pain as there are ways to make the exam more tolerable. The process will be repeated for your other breast. A typical screening mammogram consists of two to three pictures of each breast. When your exam is complete, the technologist will review the images, and then send them on to the radiologist.

After your exam

Your images will be examined and interpreted by a board-certified breast imaging radiologist (physician). The results will be sent to your healthcare provider. You will also receive the results in the mail. In certain circumstances, you may need further diagnostic evaluation, such as a diagnostic mammogram or an ultrasound. This does not necessarily indicate an abnormality was found or that your mammogram was not properly obtained, but that additional images are needed to ensure all breast tissue is fully evaluated.

Genius 3DHow often should I have a Mammogram?

Current American College of Radiology (ACR) guidelines and The Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) guidelines recommend annual mammograms for women 40 and older, continuing annual as long as a woman is in good health.  Annual mammograms and clinical breast exams combined with monthly self-exams are the most effective method for detecting breast cancer. We encourage you to contact your healthcare provider any time you experience a breast abnormality, whether you are due for your mammogram or physical exam. Scheduling a digital 2D or 3D screening mammogram does not require a provider’s order, so do not put it off. Take responsibility for your well-being and be your own best health advocate.

  • To schedule your physical and mammogram: 320-843-2030
  • To schedule your mammogram only: 320-843-1337

Walk-In Mammograms

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

SCBHS Offers Walk-In Mammograms Services:
8:30 am – 3:30 pm

Any questions, please call the Radiology Department at 320.843.1337.

SCBHS offers Ultrasound services during the following times:

Mondays 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Wednesdays 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm

Thursdays 8:00 am – 12:00 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.

SCBHS offers Echocardiogram services during the following times:

Mondays 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Wednesdays 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Thursdays 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Fridays 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Echocardiograms show what is happening in your heart. SCBHS 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.

MRI ScanSCBHS offers MRI scans on Tuesday mornings and Thursday afternoons. 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.

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.

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.

Bone DensitySCBHS 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.

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.

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.

SCBHS 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.
SCBHS 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 SCBHS we are equipped with a 24-hour teleradiology service.

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