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Abdominal Interventional Radiology

Not too long ago, surgery was the only way to diagnose and treat many conditions. Today, however, interventional radiology offers you a minimally invasive alternative for diagnosing and treating certain cancerous and non-cancerous conditions.

At UMass Memorial Medical Center, we have an entire team of interventional radiologists who specialize in procedures to diagnose and treat these conditions when they occur in the abdomen. These experts not only have extra training in interventional radiology, but also in the diseases and disorders affecting this specific area of the body.

No other hospital in Central Massachusetts offers this high level of specialized expertise.

Image-Guided Abdominal Interventional Procedures

Using either CT (computed tomography) or ultrasound to guide them, our team of abdominal interventional radiologists performs a wide variety of interventional procedures, including:

  • Biopsies
  • Fluid drainages (such as cysts or abscesses)
  • Radiofrequency ablation, which uses radio waves to create heat which is directed through a needle probe to destroy cancerous solid tumors
  • Cryoablation, which uses extreme cold to destroy or damage tissue (ablation)
  • Chemical ablation, which destroys tissue by injection of small amounts of a chemical such as alcohol; used for both solid and cystic (often fluid-filled) masses
  • Virtual colonoscopy

Notably, UMass Memorial is the only facility in Central Massachusetts to perform these minimally invasive ablation procedures.

Plus, we have a dual-source CT scanner that uses two X-ray sources instead of one. This doubles the speed of the exam so you receive less radiation, and it creates sharper images.

Virtual Colonoscopy at UMass Memorial

Virtual colonoscopy (also known as CT colonography) is a fast, effective, and relatively painless exam used for colon polyp screening. Unlike conventional colonoscopy, it does not require sedation or insertion of a colonoscope (a long, lighted tube that examines the colon).

During CT colonography, a short tube is inserted into the rectum and a machine called an insufflator injects carbon dioxide into the colon (also called the large intestine) to inflate or expand it. Images of the large intestine are then taken using computerized tomography (CT).

You may be a candidate for a virtual colonoscopy if:

  • You have no personal history of inflammatory bowel disease.
  • You have medical conditions that prevent you from being sedated.

Talk to your doctor to see if CT colonography is an option for you.