Radiology and diagnostic imaging in Denver, CO

The radiology department at Swedish Medical Center is one of the largest in the state of Colorado, offering some of the most complex medical imaging procedures in the Rocky Mountain region. Accredited by the American College of Radiology, our dedicated, highly-trained radiologists use advanced technologies and procedures to provide the best possible care for our patients.

We offer next-day scheduling for nearly every procedure and provide a multitude of diagnostic imaging services, including:

  • Interventional radiology
  • MRI
  • Nuclear medicine
  • Neurograms
  • PET/CT scans
  • Ultrasound
  • X-rays

Leading edge medical imaging technology and services at Swedish

  • Expert technologists and nurses are cross-trained to ensure the best service for patients and physicians
  • Several PET/CT scanners available on campus, including Colorado’s first and only 64-slice PET/CT
  • CT Direct program through the ER provides CT or CTA within 10 minutes for emergent stroke alert patients
  • 3T MRI and 1.5T MRI scanners provide high-resolution images for neurological, vascular, orthopedic, abdominal, pelvic and aortic scans
  • Wide range of nuclear medicine services, featuring seven digital imaging rooms and one “open” camera room for cardiac imaging for patients sensitive to small spaces
  • Three biplane neuroangiography suites
  • Women’s imaging services available on campus through a partnership with Invision Sally Jobe and Swedish’s Perinatal Resource Center

Scheduling your diagnostic imaging appointment

Swedish offers convenient scheduling to accommodate outpatient needs within 24 hours. Images are read 24/7 for immediate draft reporting or physician review via our digital access service, meaning you don’t have to carry your images to every physician you see.

Please call (303) 788-5444 to schedule any appointment at any of our three convenient locations.

Preparing for your appointment

For your convenience, enter through the ER and allow our complimentary valet service to park your car. You may also use our valet service at the main entrance. If entering through the main entrance, take the elevators up to the third floor and follow the green line to “Radiology.” You will check into radiology admissions; open from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. If your appointment falls outside of these hours, please enter through the ER entrance and with the emergency room admissions staff. The registrars will direct you to the Radiology department upon completion.

Interventional radiology

Our interventional radiology department leads the region in terms of care. Our program boasts:

  • First comprehensive stroke center in the region
  • Performed the first successful IVC thrombectomy with the AngioVac system
  • Leading center in the Rocky Mountain area for portal vein thrombosis
  • First interventional radiology department in Colorado to perform an aortic stent graft
  • The region’s only interventional radiology department to offer four biplane angiography rooms
  • Vascular malformation center located on campus

Interventional radiology procedures are used to treat a wide variety of diseases, like cancer, aneurysms, deep vein thrombosis, uterine fibroids and varicose veins.

Contact our interventional radiology manager at (303) 788-4813 for more information.  

Diagnostic radiology (X-ray)

Swedish’s diagnostic X-ray technologists are experienced in diagnostic, fluoroscopy and surgical procedures. We offer diagnostic imaging in three locations: our main hospital and two medical office building locations.

Gastrointestinal X-ray

An examination of the esophagus, stomach and first part of the small intestine, this procedure produces images allowing your healthcare provider to detect abnormalities in the size, shape, positioning or functioning of these organs.

Forms of gastrointestinal X-ray include:

  • Upper GI series (evaluates esophagus, stomach and first portion of the small intestine)
  • Esophagram (examines esophagus and its connection to the stomach)
  • Small bowel series (timed abdominal images as material flows through the small intestine)
  • Enteroclysis (examination of the small bowel and how contrast material flows)
  • Barium enema (examination of the large intestine, also known as the colon)
  • Defecogram (real time X-ray assessing anatomical problems during defecation)

Computerized tomography (CT) services

A CT scan, also known as CAT scan, is a noninvasive medical imaging exam that evaluates the internal organs, bones, soft tissue and blood vessels. A CT scan provides optimal resolution and clarity of internal structures when comparing to diagnostic radiographs (X-rays).

Our CT technologists are part of the first comprehensive stroke center in the region. Our team utilizes advanced technologies and procedures to provide the best possible care to our patients. We offer a variety of CT scans, including:

Magnified resonance imaging (MRI)

MRI is a noninvasive medical test that utilizes magnetic fields to produce anatomical images of internal body parts, including organs, soft tissues and bones, to help physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions.

Pictures produced from an MRI scan are extremely useful in diagnosing and treating a broad range of conditions, such as:

We have the ability to conduct a variety of MRI procedures, including:

  • Arthrogram (knee, wrist, hip, shoulder)
  • Arthrogram/joint injection (fluoroscopy exam of the joint)
  • Brain tissue
  • Brain spectroscopy
  • Brachial plexus (nerves from the neck into upper extremities)
  • Upper extremity
  • Lower extremity
  • Lumbar drain insertion
  • Lumbar puncture myelogram (spinal cord and nerves)
  • 3T pelvis/prostate

Schedule an MRI appointment with our team by calling (303) 788-5444.

MRI anxiolysis for claustrophobia

Claustrophobia affects up to 15 percent of all people, which can be a major problem for those needing an MRI study. At Swedish, our goal is to make our patients comfortable and accomplish their MRI with as little stress as possible.

Your physician may give you an order for anxiolysis. Anxiolysis refers to the use of a mild sedative, administered orally or intravenously, to achieve “light sedation,” or a heightened state of comfort and relaxation. Anxiolysis is effective, safe, does not affect your ability to breathe or speak and allows you to recover quickly.

Contrast enhanced MRI

Contrast enhanced MRI is a commonly used procedure in magnetic resonance imaging. Many studies do not require contrast enhancement, but your doctor may order it depending on your diagnosis. We use the intravenous agents that prove to be the safest: Magnevist and MultiHance.

Biopsies we offer

A biopsy is an examination that involves the removal of tissue to determine the cause or extent of a disease. We provide various types of biopsies, including:

  • CT biopsy drainage
  • Liver biopsy
  • Lymph node biopsy
  • Needle biopsy

Bone scans

Bone scans are used to help diagnose and track several types of bone disease. If you have skeletal pain that can't be explained, your physician may order a scan to verify whether an infection or injury (that can't be viewed with a standard X-ray) is present. At Swedish, we offer 3-phase and whole body bone scan options.

Ultrasound

All Swedish technologists are dual-registered in general and vascular ultrasound procedures, ensuring you receive the highest quality exam.

Our common exams and procedures:

Ultrasound

  • Abdomen
  • Pelvic
  • Small parts
  • Hernia

Contact our ultrasound manager with questions: (303) 788-5008.

Thyroid scanning

At Swedish, we provide a variety of imaging tests to assess your thyroid. A thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland at the base of the neck. The thyroid gland helps to regulate hormone growth and development. To assess and measure proper functioning, we offer:

  • Thyroid biopsy (small piece of thyroid removed for testing purposes)
  • Thyroid uptake and scan (measures thyroid function)
  • Thyroid ablation for hyperthyroidism (radiation therapy to treat unhealthy tissue)
  • Thyroid ablation for carcinoma (radiation therapy to destroy cancerous thyroid tissue)
  • Parathyroid scan (determines health and function of parathyroid gland)

Nuclear medicine PET/CT

Our nuclear medicine department is the only department in Colorado with two positron emission tomography (PET) and computed tomography (CT) scanners. Our center offers a dedicated, highly-trained staff with next-day scheduling for nearly every procedure. We perform a variety of unique procedures, including:

  • DaTscans
  • Rubidium PET/CT stress tests
  • Parathyroid subtraction
  • SIR-Sphere therapy
  • Xofigo prostate cancer therapy
  • MNI Alzheimer’s research program

We also perform the following treatment options:

  • Adrenal medulla MIBG
  • Cisternogram for leak
  • Gastric emptying
  • General cisternogram
  • General lymphoscintigraphy
  • Hepatobiliary or gallbladder scan (HIDA)
  • I-123 whole body scan
  • Indium-111 white blood cell scan (identifies bone marrow abnormalities)
  • Meckel’s diverticulum
  • Octreotide study
  • Sentinel node lymphoscintigraphy (look for potential site lymph node activity)
  • Shunt patency test
  • VQ scan (examines air and blood flow in the lungs)

PET/CT billing

You will receive two bills after your procedure. One from Swedish Medical Center and one from Radiology Imaging Associates (RIA).

Questions about nuclear medicine? Call (303) 788-6851.

Located on the 3rd floor of the main hospital, we recommend using our free valet service at either the emergency room or the main lobby.

Spine and lumbar exams

Swedish offers spine and lumbar physiotherapy examinations as part of imaging services These tests are used to determine the cause of lower back pain and to determine the need for physical therapy and rehabilitation.