This test examines a sample of any biological liquid or tissue, to verify whether it contains abnormal cells.
Cytological analyses comprise: swabs, PAP test, histological samples, HPV test, etc.…
Mapping of moles
Mapping of moles consists in acquiring on a computer both macroscopic and dermoscopic images of moles. Dermoscopic images are acquired with an appropriate camera equipped with a lens that is applied on each nevus to collect images that are not visible to the naked eye.
Mapping of moles is aimed at evaluating changes in the appearance of nevi over time. In this case nevi may become dangerous and must be removed so as to prevent their degenerating into a melanoma.
Electromyography (also called EMG) is a diagnostic test useful in diagnosing nerve diseases (e.g. neuropathies) and muscle diseases (e.g. myopathies). By the term “electromyography” in general we intend both “nerve conduction speed” or “electroneurography” (ENG) and the true and proper electromyography (“needle” EMG).
For the diagnosis of which diseases is electromyography useful?
- Carpal tunnel syndrome (or median nerve trapping in the carpal tunnel – wrist)
- Ulnar sulcus syndrome (or ulnar nerve trapping in the elbow)
- Guyon’s syndrome (or ulnar nerve trapping in Guyon’s canal – wrist)
- Tarsal tunnel syndrome
- Polyneuropathies (e.g. diabetic neuropathy)
- Plexus pathologies
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Muscle diseases (e.g. myopathies and myositis)
- Diseases of the neuro-muscular junction (e.g. myasthenia gravis)
- and other diseases…
Optical computed tomography (OCT) or optical coherence tomography, is a non-invasive diagnostic exam which allows obtaining scansions of the cornea and retina for the diagnosis and follow-up of numerous corneal and retinoic diseases, and for the preoperative diagnosis and postoperative follow-up of most eye diseases needing surgery.
What is optical computed tomography (OCT)?
It is a non-invasive imaging technique, based on white light or low coherency interferometry, a Laser bundle with no harmful radiations, which is used to analyze ocular structures, especially retinoic and corneal, by means of high resolution sections.
What is optical computed tomography (OCT) used for?
OCT allows obtaining very precise corneal and retinoic scansions and subsequently a detailed analysis of corneal strata, the central region of the retina called the macula, and the optic nerve. This “imaging” method allows a doctor to diagnose and monitor numerous corneal and retinoic diseases, such as, for example, senile macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. It is particularly useful in cases of macular edema of various origin. OCT is an indispensable exam in the preoperatory diagnosis and postoperative follow-up of most eye diseases needing surgery. Since it is a digitalized exam, it allows comparing different tests thus providing differential maps of the patient’s eyes. It is a fundamental exam in the early diagnosis of some diseases: for example, in patients affected by glaucoma, OCT is able to measure the thickness of the nervous fibers surrounding the optic nerve, showing, in some cases, an early alteration of said fibers in the presence of a normal visual field, and this allows initiating promptly a treatment in order to slow down the progression of the disease.
Who can undergo optical computed tomography (OCT)?
All patients in whom a corneal, retinoic or optic nerve disease is suspected, except for those presenting with a remarkable opacity of the crystalline lens, important modifications of the lacrimal film and absence of eye fixation.
Is optical computed tomography (OCT) painful or dangerous?
It is a reliable, non-invasive, harmless exam, not involving any contact.
How does optical computed tomography (OCT) work?
Performing an OCT is simple and fast, and lasts about 10-15 minutes. The patient is seated in front of the device and is invited by the operator to fix a luminous point with his/her eye: scansion begins immediately when the eye structure to be analyzed is focused. With last generation OCTs, the exam may be performed even without dilating the pupil, after the operator has evaluated the features of the eye and the type of disease to be investigated.
An innovation in prenatal screening: starting from the 10th week of pregnancy, with a normal blood sample taken from the mother for analyzing fetal DNA, it is possible to diagnose Trisomy 21, 18, 13 and chromosome aneuploidy.
The information that the Prenatal test can provide concerns the risk of Trisomy 21, 18, 13 by measuring the quantity of fetal DNA, specific for the related chromosomes, which circulates free in maternal blood, but this does not rule out all fetal anomalies. Therefore, since it is not a diagnostic test, the doctor may decide to integrate the information provided by the test with other clinical and echography data.
The test may be requested by sector professionals for pregnant women starting from the 10th week of gestation. Based on a simple blood sample taken from the mother, it can be performed even in single or twin pregnancies (maximum 2 fetuses) after in vitro fecundation.
The very high reliability of the test significantly reduces the
risk of useless invasive diagnostic procedures (amniocentesis, villocentesis).
The scientific studies published confirm the high sensitivity of the test, in as much as it is the only prenatal screening used at London’s Fetal Medicine Center where the international organization (Fetal Medicine Foundation), dealing with verifying the reliability of the tests used in this delicate sector, has its premises.
The results of the test are available within two weeks from the date of sampling and, in a very clear and understandable way, they specify the specific risk for each trisomy. At the pregnant woman’s discretion, the sex of the unborn child may be indicated, too, and the X and Y chromosomes investigated for the presence of any correlated aneuploidy.
Most people, although they have experienced, temporarily or for long, how difficult it is to have good sleep, are too often unaware of the importance of nocturnal sleep and ignore the existence and consequences of the most important sleep disorders: INSOMNIA, NARCOLEPSY, SNORING, OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA SYNDROME (OSAS), RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME, CIRCADIAN RHYTHM DISORDERS, JET LAG, BRUXISM, SOMNAMBULISM.
Among all sleep disorders, the least known is paradoxically also the most dangerous: Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome (OSAS).
By Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome we mean a condition characterized by repeated episodes of occlusion of the upper respiratory tract (anatomic/functional), complete (apnea) or partial (hypopnea), during sleep; which cause:
- respiratory stress
- the reduction of oxygen in the blood
- sleep fragmentation
OSAS is a PATHOLOGICAL INTERRUPTION OF NOCTURNAL BREATHING, associated with STRONG SNORING, and it may cause:
- morning headaches
- lack of concentration
- diurnal sleepiness
- falling asleep while driving
- mood depression
- work injuries
- arrythmias and cardiovascular mortality (stroke).
Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome is a serious and growing medical, social and economic problem, and the lack of diagnosis and the non-treatment of this syndrome are decisive over time.
All this today is easily diagnosable and treatable with Polysomnography: this is an exam during which sleep can be monitored and organic disorders studied, especially in patients who have been struggling with sleep for a long time.
Polysomnography enables sleep to be studied objectively by recording all the physiological variables involved in disorders of the various phases of sleep: REM and non-REM.
On the basis of an accurate diagnosis and evaluation of the results of the test, the specialist in Sleep Medicine can diagnose the nature of the disorder and, keeping in mind the needs of the patient, choose the most appropriate treatment.
As already said, polysomnography is aimed at monitoring and recording cardio-respiratory activity and in certain cases, nocturnal neurological activity by means of:
- a chest band detecting chest expansion movements
- an abdominal band detecting abdominal muscle movements
- a pulse oximeter which is positioned on a finger of the hand to detect peripheral oxyhemoglobin saturation and the heart rate
- a nasal cannula to detect respiratory flow through changes in pressure
- a sensor for snoring
- a position sensor enabling the position of the body while sleeping (supine, lateral or prone) to be detected
- electrodes positioned on the scalp enabling brain activity to be detected (a parameter possible only in case of neurological nocturnal polysomnography)
This is a painless test, during which important physiological parameters, normally guaranteeing refreshing sleep, are monitored and recorded.
A painless test that allows analyzing heart frequency by reading electric impulses.
A basic electrocardiogram (ECG) is done while the patient is lying on a medical bed, a stress ECG needs physical activity to be done (either on a treadmill or on specific medical steps).
This test is necessary not only for routine follow-ups but also for obtaining competitive or non-competitive sports fitness certificates (a single ECG is sufficient in case of certificate renewals).
An ELECTROENCEPHALOGRAM (EEG) is a diagnostic test which, by means of electrodes positioned on the scalp, measures brain electrical activity and reproduces it on a monitor, in the shape of a series of waves with various frequencies.
An electroencephalogram is a painless test, with no side effects, which can be done at any age.
Besides its central role in epileptic disorders, it is a valid tool in evaluating all those diseases capable of modifying brain electrical activity, such as: tumoral or vascular brain lesions, degenerative diseases, metabolic abnormalities, infective diseases, comas, therapeutic response to medicines that are active on the central nervous system, certain types of headaches, outcomes of cranial traumas, sleep disorders.
Echo color doppler
An echo color doppler (or ECD) is a non-invasive diagnostic procedure, which, through Ultrasound, enables a doctor to visualize the main blood vessels of the body and study the blood flow within them. This technique is capable of providing very precise information on the blood flow within blood vessels.
The technique has revolutionized the diagnostics of vascular and heart diseases, with the possibility of detecting and monitoring over time: arterial stenosis, aneurysms, superficial and deep venous thrombosis, venous insufficiency.
Diagnostic tests done:
- Complete abdomen ECD
- abdominal aorta and
- large abdominal vessels ECD
- arterial ECD of upper vessels
- arterial ECD of lower vessels (paid for by the NHS)
- arterial and venous ECD of the arms and SAT (supraortic trunks)
- arterial and venous ECD of the legs (paid for by the NHS)
- cardiological ECD (paid for by the NHS)
- liver and spleen ECD
- penis ECD at rest and after pharmacological stimulation
- kidney ECD
- ECD of a single organ
- testicle ECD
- ECD of supraortic trunks (SAT) (paid for by the NHS)
SAT ECD with angiological evaluation
Bone densitometry is a technique used to diagnose osteoporosis. This exam enables a doctor to measure the exact content of calcium in the bones.
The exam is done using a DEXA method, with which it is possible to evaluate the degree of mineralization of the bones of the lumbar spine, the femur, the wrist, the hip or of the whole skeleton (”total body” bone densitometry).
Bone densitometry is very precise, and shows early alterations of bone tissue when mineral loss (osteopenia) is still in an initial stage. This exam does not need any preparation, does not take much time and, once finished, the patient can immediately return to his/her normal life.
The exam is painless and without risks. Thanks to this test it is possible to:
- evaluate your fracture risk;
- decide if and which therapeutic measures are necessary;
- monitor therapeutic measures;
- verify therapeutic effectiveness.
Bone density values are then compared in a reference curve with those of a person of the same age and sex.
The results of a densitometry may be:
- in the norm (the suspect of osteoporosis is not confirmed);
- osteopenia (bone density is only slightly reduced);
- osteoporosis (reduction of bone density is evident or remarkable).
Mammography is an X-ray in which the breast is squeezed between two plates, in order to detect the presence of potentially tumoral formations. It is therefore performed when on breast palpation a nodule is present, or when there are other signs requiring an in-depth diagnostic procedure. Mammography is furthermore performed as a screening test to try and discover a breast disease before it becomes manifest.
Often associated with a cardiological evaluation, this exam allows evaluating the heart rate over a certain period of time, usually 24 hours, but sometimes monitoring for 48 or 72 hours is required.
The test is performed by positioning electrodes on a patient, which are connected to a device where data are recorded in continuum. The test is completely painless, and includes application and removal of electrodes and data recording. A document will be given to the patient with the recorded data together with a report signed by the cardiologist.
An echocardiogram is an exam done by means of Ultrasounds transmitted by a probe positioned on the chest. On a special monitor it is possible to visualize the heart chambers and measure them, evaluate the heart pump function and the state of the heart valves. It is a diagnostic instrument used to identify the principal heart diseases.
For a complete first evaluation, heart examination can be accompanied by a heart echocardiogram and a basic electrocardiogram (ECG). These procedures guarantee an initial level of cardiological screening.
This procedure is addressed to everyone, both to those suffering from heart diseases, and to those wishing to monitor their heart functionality. Within a single appointment the following are performed:
- cardiological examination
- heart echo color doppler cardiography at rest.
Joint Magnetic Resonance
The new department of Diagnostic Radiology at Blue Medical Center has been active since the 1st of December 2020.
The new device ESAOTE O-Scan allows performing the exam in a fast and accurate way, similarly to high field resonance, and above all with patient’s comfort thanks to its open ergonomics.
Esaote dynamic Magnetic Resonance is capable of revealing hidden interferences that are difficult or often impossible to visualize with traditional static magnetic resonance.
Functional evaluation provides an added tool in improving assistance to patients, in particular in the field of professional sports medicine.
Traditional Diagnostic Radiology
The new department of Diagnostic Radiology at Blue Medical Center has been open since the 1st of January 2020.
The new apparatus Esaote DR M40-1A is very light, easy to work and of limited overall size.
It offers quality imaging thanks to its high nominal power independently from the volume of the body being examined.
It optimizes the high productivity dosage of the system thanks to the possibility of using Anatomically Programmed Radiography (APR).
It allows performing most of the traditional radiology X-rays.