Value of Brain Scanning

Brain Scanning is the primary form of clinical testing in the identification, diagnosis and management of neurological disorders across the world. A timely brain scan can help to detect a neurological problem at an early stage, helping to prevent the onset of symptoms that are often debilitating. Brain Scans are of utmost importance wherein the scanned images can help to identify the chances of the patient suffering typical neurological disorders like a brain stroke or the propensity to develop Alzheimer's disease. Even the most serious of neurological disorders induced by problems in the vascular (blood-flow related problems) in the skull can be identified via a Brain Scan.

The importance of a timely brain scan is best reflected among cases of injury or trauma patients where brain scanning is recommended as a part of early stage testing among patients who have suffered a serious injury since it helps to detect any impact on the brain that might lead to a neurological problem. This is often referred to as brain scanning for provisional diagnosis. If a hematoma is suspected of inducing compromised neurological functions, CAT Scan or Computerized Axial Tomography Scanning can be recommended and this is the standard brain scanning recommended for patients admitted with head trauma injuries. The early detection of hematomas plays a decisive role in maximizing preservation of brain function and preventing a possible fatality.

Brain Imaging Data is also used as a predictor in the niche of Neurosciences. Here, brain scans can be correlated with the changes in behavior, neurological reactions in response to stimulus and for the overall evaluation of brain activity. Brain Imaging Techniques are increasingly being merged with diagnostic methods used in Psychology. This is mainly because it has been established that many of the neurological problems are precipitated by psychological problems. Brain Imaging has helped psychologists in tracing a pattern in the brain activity, i.e. activity levels that are coherent with the behavioral problems in the patient.

It has been seen that patients suspected of suffering from a neurological problem tend to benefit a lot from repeated brain scans since repeated imaging studies help to accurate identify the part of the brain wherein the brain tissue has become inactive or is suffering from abnormal growths like a tumor. This essentially means better prognosis and management where brain scan combined with tests like Cerebral Angiography helps to identify any possibly fatal neurological condition apart from helping neurosurgeon understand the success of their treatment and accordingly planning the future course-of-treatment.

The biggest value that Brain Imaging Techniques offer is that they help physicians measure and understand different variables that could affect brain activity. For instance, EEG or Electroencephalograph can be used for identifying the pattern of electrical activity in the cortex of the brain. MEG or Magneto-encephalography is used for measuring the strength of magnetic fields that are actually a result of electrical activity in the brain’s cortex. MRI Brain Scanning in the form of fMRI helps to measure the blood-flow pattern among brain’s tissue and thus, helps in the analysis of oxygenated blood uptake in the brain. A partial derivative of MRI called Magnetic Resonance or MR is often used for specifically measuring the cortical thickness of the brain. The biggest advantage is that these scanning technologies can be combined as per the diagnostic requirements. For instance, if a SPECT imaging report doesn't satisfy the diagnostic evaluation purposes, a PET scan be used within the same healthcare facility to gain a better perspective.