Benelux first: New scanner analyses legs of standing patients

Ghent University Hospital has installed a new scanner that takes images of patients with leg problems. The device, called HiRise, allows patients to stand upright during the imaging process. This will enable doctors to diagnose better than when patients lie down using conventional scanners. According to the hospital, this is a first in the Benelux.

The new CBCT scanner costs around 300,000 euros, but the investment brings many medical benefits, say radiologist Wouter Huysse and orthopaedic surgeon Arne Burssens.

"Because the patient stands upright in the scanner, we can study the influence of the load under gravity up to the hips. These 3D images explain the patient's symptoms more clearly than when the scan is done lying down," the specialists say. Prostheses and other orthopaedic materials are also scanned under realistic conditions.

The new scanner is particularly useful for patients with O- and X-legs, flat or hollow feet, complex and operated fractures, some ankle sprains and congenital bone defects. The radiation dose projected by the scanner is 20 times lower than a conventional CT scan, but doctors who have used it say the images are very high quality and detailed.


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