MAHONING TWP. — Doctors are treating patients in the new interventional radiology hybrid room at Geisinger in a safer, better and faster manner, according to Dr. Aalpen Patel during an open house Tuesday.

Patel, the radiology department chairman, said the room will allow for future "procedures not conceived yet."

The Siemens Nexaris Artis-CT, referred to as the Interventional Radiology Hybrid Room, is the first model of its kind to be installed in the United States.

With this model, patients won't have to be moved for a CT image and again for an angiogram, said Dr. Ashok Bhanushali, system director of vascular and interventional radiology.

The state-of-the-art surgical theater, in the Abigail Pavilion, allows all imaging and procedures to be done in one location to increase patient safety and reduce the risk of infection.

Patel said an example would be a patient with a liver tumor being scanned and the tumor treated without the patient having to make another trip or be again admitted to the hospital.

Since the equipment was installed three weeks ago, the medical staff has treated 30 patients in the hybrid room.

Bhanushali said patients have been very grateful after learning about the new technology being used. 

"They are getting the best care they possibly can in their neighborhood," he said.

Tumors, for example, can be better targeted and treated more accurately, Bhanushali said.

According to Geisinger, the Siemens Nexaris Artis-CT multi-modality suite gives the interventional radiologist the capability to use the CT scan and angiography together to reach targeted areas and to do complex procedures with precision. It will help the interventional radiologist to better care for complex oncological patients.

The system includes advanced features such as the instant-fusion of an angiogram and CT image to produce a 3D rendering of an area of interest. With the embo-guidance system, doctors can detect multiple tumors and vessels supplying tumors in a precise manner with a reduced radiation dose to the patient, according to Geisinger.