In-House MRI Services NOW AVAILABLE at Decatur County Hospital

When it comes to quality health care, location is key. As your local hospital, we pride ourselves on offering as many services as possible close to home to save you the hassle of traveling to get your care. The latest addition to meet this goal is our brand new permanent in-house MRI machine, which began operations as of June 25, 2024.

The GE SIGNA™ 1.5T MRI machine is equipped with the latest in MRI technology, and is designed to increase efficiency, improve productivity, and maximize diagnostic potential while keeping your experience and comfort in mind. For the first time in Decatur County Hospital’s history, we have dramatically increased our MRI availability, and plan to make MRI services available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year in 2025. With the addition of this coverage, this will allow constant access to technology enhancing our providers’ ability to diagnose and track the progression of heart disease, evaluate thyroid function, detect obstruction of the renal blood flow, locate cancerous tissue, evaluate any degenerative and/or arthritic changes in the joints, and to find bone diseases and tumors.

Specifically, this new MRI scanner includes advanced applications that will allow significant expansion of examinations including those not typically performed today such as: multi-phase liver, liver fat quantifications and iron loading, advanced female pelvis imaging, and rectal cancer staging. It will allow significant expansion of neurology and musculoskeletal imaging in the presence of metal implants, and American College of Radiology (ACR)-compliant breast examinations.

Equipped with the latest in MRI scanning capabilities, MRI scans will take less time, provide clearer images, and be more comfortable for patients with air coil technology built into the scanning bed. Other capabilities that are included will aid in the ability to complete a quality, routine exam. The features of this scanner allow for 1) free breathing acquisition techniques for those who cannot comply due to health or hearing impairment or those who are unable to comprehend typical breath hold commands, 2) motion elimination techniques for those unable to hold still due to physiologic or pulsatile motion, 3) rapid scanning techniques for those unable to withstand long scans, 4) silent scan capabilities for those intolerant of loud noise, and 5) the ability to complete bone imaging in patients that cannot or should not be exposed to ionizing radiation.

Bringing this MRI unit and service in-house will increase our patient satisfaction by allowing you to travel within the hospital building to our scanner, versus needing to travel outside to the mobile truck in all kinds of weather. This means you will be more comfortable during your transport to and from the scanning room, and you will be in a temperature-controlled environment for the entirety of your scan.

This technology at Decatur County Hospital will allow our community members to get appropriate testing close to home, without waiting weeks or even months for a diagnosis and a proper course of action to treat cancers or other illnesses. If you or someone you know are looking for specialty care, call us at 641-446-2285 to learn more about our services, and schedule an appointment today.