Comparing different types of Neuroimaging

Essay by UmmmHuhUniversity, Bachelor'sA, November 2008

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Neuroimaging is a test that takes a picture of a feature. It helps doctors determine seizure activity, abnormalities of structures and fluids, and vascular malformations. Some tests are MEG/MSI (Magnetoencephalography/magnetic source images), CT scan (Computed Tomography scan), MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging), PET scan (Positron Emission Tomography scan), fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) (NYU, 2008).

MEG/MSI: Magnetoencephalography bases its technique on measuring changes in magnetic fields from the brain. It uses detectors to be positioned near the head. This non-invasive (do not break the skin) test is safe and there are no risks involved. Magnetic waves, which are different from electrical waves, are recorded in a three-dimensional image and is usually done between seizure activity (NYU, 2008). Temporal resolution is a recording technique used to detect and pinpoint when activity occurs. By using this in a MEG, it can pick up any fast changes in neural activity (Pinel, 2008).

Physicians would prescribe such a test if they were planning a surgery. It aids in pinpointing the area that a person maybe having seizure activity. Patients who are epileptic or have a tumor or mass are usually subject to such a test (NYU, 2008).

CT scan: Computed tomography scans give less exposure to radiation than an x-ray. A computer assists the scan. The patient lies down with their head inserted in a huge cylinder that has an x-ray detector on one side and an x-ray tube on the other that project the x-ray beam. The cylinder rotates around the patient's head and takes a series of pictures, which is generated through the computer. Then the cylinder moves to horizontally to another section of the brain. This gives the radiologist pictures of the brain in slices, so to speak (Pinel, 2008). This type of test is usually done with patients...