A computed tomography perfusion scan (CT perfusion of the brain shows reduced blood flow to certain areas.

A fast stroke diagnosis leads to timely stroke treatment, improving your chances for a full recovery. Our neuroradiology group provides emergency brain imaging in the form of computerized tomography (CT) scans and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to pinpoint the location and cause of the stroke. They also provide advanced imaging to determine the complexity of the stroke and diagnose other neurovascular conditions.

We have earned an international reputation for excellence. In close collaboration with GE Healthcare, the Radiology Department uses the latest CT and MRI technology available. The department’s team teaches these advanced applications to healthcare professionals from around the globe.

Acute Imaging – Immediate Information When Seconds Count

For conditions like stroke and aneurysm when rapid diagnosis and treatment are vital, we offer comprehensive access to the emergency tests needed. These “first-line” tests of brain function and blood flow include:

  • “Fast MRI, ” rapid MRI methods, to quickly provide cross-sectional images of the brain
  • Diffusion MRI, to rapidly help diagnose a stroke by showing regions in the brain where blood flow is impaired.
  • STAT (immediate) CT scanning, both CT angiography and CT perfusion, to help assess blood flow within the brain

The Froedtert & MCW Acute Stroke Team (FAST) is available around the clock. The team provides stroke patients with rapid access to expert diagnosis 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Advanced Stroke and Neurovascular Imaging

In addition to “first-line” imaging, we use the most advanced diagnostic tools to provide additional, critical information about the location and complexity of stroke and other neurovascular conditions.

Tools for imaging of blood vessels and blood flow include:

  • CT angiography, which combines a CT scan with an injection of a special dye to produce pictures of blood vessels and tissues in the neck and brain. CT angiography is used to help locate aneurysms, narrowed or blocked blood vessels and abnormal blood vessel formations.
  • CT perfusion, another CT scan technique, used to evaluate blood flow
  • Catheter angiography (diagnostic catheter cerebral angiogram or spinal angiogram), which produces high-resolution images of the blood vessels of the head and neck or spine. This is a minimally invasive procedure in which a small catheter is placed in the arteries that serve the head and the neck. Dye is injected and images are taken to show blood vessel anatomy and blood flow.
  • Magnetic resonance angiography (MRA), which uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to create two- or three-dimensional images of the blood vessel anatomy of the head and neck
  • Transcranial Doppler (TCD), an ultrasound procedure that examines the blood circulation within the brain
  • Carotid ultrasound, used to assess blood flow in the carotid arteries of the neck

Tools for imaging of brain function include:

  • Magnetic resonance spectroscopy, a type of MRI used for diagnosing brain tumors
  • Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), provides information about blood flow to show how regions of the brain are functioning and identify abnormalities
  • Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI),can be used to help identify regions in the brain affected by a stroke.
  • Magnetoencephalography (MEG), a non-invasive diagnostic tool that helps map brain activity Cardiac imaging Transthoracic echocardiograms (TTE) and transesophageal echocardiograms (TEE) are used to assess the heart. A malfunction of the heart can contribute to stroke.

Cardiac Imaging

Transthoracic echocardiograms (TTE) and transesophageal echocardiograms (TEE) are used to assess the heart. A malfunction of the heart can contribute to stroke.