ROCKVILLE, Md., Oct. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Community Radiology Associates (CRA), a division of RadNet, Inc., a national market leader providing high-quality, cost-effective diagnostic imaging services through a network of 237 fully-owned and operated outpatient imaging centers, announced it will offer Amyvid™, a radioactive tracer used in positron emission tomography – computed tomography (PET/CT) imaging, at its Frederick North and Olney locations. Amyvid is the first test that can effectively rule out Alzheimer's disease (AD) in patients who are being evaluated for cognitive impairment.
Every patient with AD has increased levels of beta-amyloid plaque deposits in the brain at autopsy. Amyvid binds to beta-amyloid plaques and allows a PET/CT image to detect their presence. A positive Amyvid scan indicates moderate to frequent beta-amyloid plaques are present. While this amount of beta-amyloid plaque is present in patients with AD, it is also found in patients with other types of neurologic conditions and in older people with normal cognition.
"A negative Amyvid scan provides persuasive evidence AD is not the cause for a patient's observed cognitive decline," said Paul Schaefer, M.D., president of Community Radiology and board certified radiologist. "This imaging technique will allow researchers to design more selective clinical trials for the next generation of treatment options."
Prior to the release of Amyvid PET/CT imaging, physicians had limited tools to definitively diagnose a patient with AD. More than 20 percent of AD cases are currently misdiagnosed. AD is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S. Among the top 10 causes of death, AD is the only one that cannot be medically cured, prevented or slowed down. Between 2000 and 2008, U.S. AD deaths rose 66 percent.
"While this new diagnostic tool cannot confirm an AD diagnosis, it allows physicians to identify and treat patients for other causes of cognitive impairment if they have a negative Amyvid scan," said Dr. Schaefer. "Our patients will have a unique opportunity to benefit from the latest development in PET/CT imaging."
About Community Radiology Associates
Community Radiology Associates (CRA) is one of the largest imaging providers in the Maryland/DC Metro Area. CRA offers 19 convenient outpatient locations in 4 counties. CRA offers a complete range of imaging services including Digital Mammography, X-Ray, MRI/MRA, CT/CTA, PET/CT, Nuclear Medicine, Ultrasound, DEXA and more.
SOURCE Community Radiology Associates