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TODAY news for Thursday, July 28, 2008

Loma Linda University Medical Center news

Ribbon cutting ceremonies for new Heart and Imaging Center held

Officials of the Loma Linda University Medical Center division of cardiovascular medicine cut the ribbon recently at grand opening ceremonies for the new Heart and Imaging Center in Colton.
Officials of the Loma Linda University Medical Center division of cardiovascular medicine cut the ribbon recently at grand opening ceremonies for the new Heart and Imaging Center in Colton. (Left to right): Ramdas Pai, MD, Padmini Varadarajan, MD, Kenneth Jutzy, MD, and David Hinshaw, MD.
Ribbon cutting ceremonies for Loma Linda University Medical Center’s new Heart and Imaging Center—which took place on June 25, 2008, at 900 East Washington Street in Colton—signal a new era in disease detection for cardiovascular patients in the Inland Empire.

According to Ramdas Pai, MD, medical director, the Center hosts a variety of state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment including the first 3T MRI high-field cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging device dedicated to cardiology applications in the western United States.

Advanced cardiac imaging diagnostics available at the Center include electrocardiography, stress testing, echocardiography, and 3T magnetic resonance imaging (3T MRI) for full body scanning and cardiac scanning. The 3T MRI device enables doctors to image difficult regions of the body in three dimensions with amazing clarity.

Padmini Varadarajan, MD, a cardiologist at the Heart and Imaging Center, says 3T MRI images have much higher resolution than less advanced technologies and allow doctors to see into vital organs with greater precision.

Dr. Varadarajan says that she and her colleagues are “particularly proud of its pioneering program in high-field cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging. While most cardiac centers use lower-field imaging devices, our division has invested in high-field diagnostic studies.” The advantage to the patient is that dangerous diseases can be diagnosed at much earlier stages than with other technologies.

“CMR imaging is non-invasive and allows for evaluation of heart and vascular function using a single modality,” Dr. Varadarajan reports. She also states that it does not involve some of the risks associated with ionizing radiation or x-ray dye, and that the new 3T MRI imaging “can be described as a ‘one-stop shop’ for the comprehensive analysis, including severity and prognosis, of virtually any form of cardiovascular disease.”

The Heart and Imaging Center will formally open once final state approval is received.

By James Ponder

TODAY news for Thursday, July 28, 2008