Chapter 05: Understanding Other Imaging Modalities

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1

contrast

the feature of a radiographic image that affects the ability to visualize detail and detect lesions

2

film/detector contrast

quality inherent in the film type and the processing techniques that is not changeable by the operator

3

gamma rays

physically similar to x-rays but generated spontaneously from the decay of radioactive isotopes

4

gantry

the “hole” in the center of a computed tomography scanner

5

Hounsfield unit

the numeric scale for representing the different tissue characteristics by their x-ray density (or “electron density”)

6

positive contrast agent

radiopaque medium used in imaging; iodine and barium are positive contrast agents

7

subject contrast

affected by the absorption characteristics of the tissue being imaged and the imaging parameters

8

ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt

a tube that is placed by a neurosurgeon to relieve intracranial pressure caused by increased cerebrospinal fluid (hydrocephalus)