Cancer is an umbrella term for a large number of illnesses brought by the abnormal development of cells. These cells may divide uncontrollably wherein the body’s immune functions might find it challenging to control the abnormal growth. Different screening tests exist to help patients determine the type of cancer they might have in their bodies. An example of a system to assist in cancer-screening is Teleradiology.
What is Teleradiology?
Teleradiology is a practice performed by an experienced radiologist in which the expert scans radiological images from a patient. Healthcare facilities offering teleradiology services use specialized equipment to transmit clear images electronically from an individual’s body back to the device.
The reports gathered from the procedure will help medical experts study vital insights that may assist in determining the course of a patient’s further care.
This system may incorporate a range of technologies, including:
- Computerized Technology (CT) scan
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan
Medical professionals using teleradiology may also use networking technologies like the Internet and Local Area Networks (LAN) to deliver the images to doctors. Cloud-based technology is also a possible channel for users to transmit photos to specific users.
What is the Process of Teleradiology?
Many hospitals, diagnostic imaging centers, and urgent care clinics are now accepting teleradiology practices. This widespread popularity might be a crucial element to the fast-growing implementation of these procedures to help address the insufficiencies of health & medical establishments in screening cancer patients.
This growing demand helps to bring about practitioners specializing in doing and studying radiological images. Nonetheless, teleradiology processes come from a fundamental triad. The elements of this triangle are:
- An image-sending device or station
- An established transmission network
- An image-retrieval tool or station
The entire teleradiology procedure might not function properly when one piece of the triad is missing. Furthermore, users operating the image-retrieval section should view the recovered images on a high-quality display. Otherwise, critical sections of reports may not appear bright, thereby increasing the risks of misdiagnoses.
What are the Advantages of Teleradiology for Cancer Screening?
Like other branches of telemedicine, teleradiology helps bridge the gap between qualified radiologists and the lack of diagnostic services in specific locations. Bringing this technology to hospitals and other medical establishments may help reduce workload.
Other benefits of Teleradiology include:
- Cost Reduction
Various teleradiology technologies help eliminate the need for travel. Sending data is now available through different Information Technology (IT) network infrastructures. Radiologists can now send images through the Internet and other online pathways.
Thus, professionals can send and receive the needed data without additional travel costs. Also, the strategic uses of teleradiology solutions help improve access to immediate imaging results. Hence, it can make hospitals more competitive as establishments with special radiology equipment can better cater to the cancer-screening needs of their patients.
- Time Savings
Teleradiology systems help produce data imaging results faster than other cancer-screening procedures. Patients might not wait a long time before they can see the results of their examinations. Consequently, radiologists use private and secure telecommunication networks to send and receive imaging data. This data-transferring procedure may take only a matter of seconds to complete.
- After Hour Services
Radiologists can cater to more patients with teleradiology equipment even when the clinic, hospital, or diagnostics center closes for the day. These pieces of equipment may also aid radiologists from the need to be on constant alert for on-call services.
- Enhanced Access to Care
Rural areas with a seeming lack of medical facilities may take advantage of teleradiology to help screen cancers in their locations. Imparting this system to non-urban areas may help alleviate specific healthcare disparities.
- Improves Client Care
Radiologists may not necessarily be in the same establishment as their patients when screening for cancers using teleradiology. This feature may become an important asset to radiologist subspecialists like:
- Pediatric radiologists
- MRI radiologists
These various benefits may help provide access to radiologist expertise to areas found to lack medical knowledge in this specific field.
What are the Uses of Teleradiology?
Aside from the numerous available benefits, teleradiology may also impart many uses to medical establishments. These practices may include:
- Research Studies
Teleradiology may also be useful in managing reports for research and teaching. The data gathered may help advance related sciences to assist in training the next generation of medical experts.
Practices in this field may also take place in educational scenarios. Educators can hold live performances to help radiology students learn more about relevant topics.
- Imaging Centers
Specific hospitals might be catering to a high volume of customers for cancer-screening tests. Patients can still pursue taking the examination within hospital walls, but it might take quite a long time before the procedure commences.
Instead, third-party imaging centers with teleradiology expertise can handle the cancer-screening tests for interested patients. So, it helps save time for the individual who needs the examination.
Urgent care facilities can also use teleradiology systems to supply accurate and fast readings, leading to reliable results.
- Provide Second Opinions
Patients may want to opt for second opinions to help ensure that the initial diagnosis was correct. Individual medical facilities might have in-house radiologists who are also experts in teleradiology.
Thus, patients may want to use the services of the in-house specialists after accruing the aid of third-party experts for cancer-screening tests.
What to Look for in Teleradiology Systems?
The constant changes in the healthcare sector may need patients to search for the right expertise to cater to their specific needs correctly. These factors to consider may include:
- Specialization in different medical fields like orthopedics, pediatrics, and radiology.
- Key images with attached footnotes found in reports.
- Effective management practices to ensure accurate imaging results.
- Access to images and reports on various devices.
- The reputation of the teleradiology expert or group.
At the time of writing, modern teleradiology systems are now available in various medical facilities. Understanding these technologies may help produce better results for patients. Establishments in the industry may also acquire advantages to assist in providing better care to patients in need of cancer-screening examinations.