The Dual Source Computed Tomography (CT) Scanner



The Dual Source CT uses two x-ray sources and two detectors to give our physicians high-quality 3-D images of “slices” of the body allowing them to make diagnosis and treatment decisions in as little as three minutes. It also:

  • allows our radiologists to view results immediately
  • uses half the radiation of traditional scanners
  • eliminates the need for a biopsy or exploratory surgery in some cases
  • has the extraordinary ability to take more than 6,000 images of the heart in as little as ten seconds
  • permits our cardiologists to evaluate patients with exceptionally high heart rates without having to wait for beta blockers to bring the heart rate down
  • has a wide range of applications including imaging complex vascular cases that would have been impossible in the past
  • allows physicians to remove images of muscle and tissue from a scan with the click of a mouse—revealing previously unattainable details of the bone needed for proper diagnosis
  • can detect cancer at its earliest stage which means a better chance for survival



The 3 Tesla MRI


The 3 Tesla MRI is faster and two times stronger than traditional MRIs. It:

  • captures images with such exceptional detail that our physicians can see structures within the body that have never been seen before.
  • has a powerful magnet that can be used to detect cancers in their earliest stages.
  • can diagnose neurological disorders such as stroke.
  • is capable of scanning the entire body for cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and orthopedic conditions
  • is so sophisticated it is usually found only in research facilities.


Intraoperative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (iMRI)



In 2008, Sacred Heart Hospital opened its first smart operating room, the Smart O.R.® for brain surgery. The Smart O.R. contains a revolutionary moveable iMRI which works in conjunction with some of the world’s most complex BrainLAB® navigational mapping technologies to assist our neurosurgeons every step of the way from planning and executing to concluding a surgical procedure.

  • Before surgery, the tools available in the Smart O.R. provide a virtual map of the surgical approach, allowing the surgeon to plan the safest and most direct path to a tumor anywhere within the brain.

  • During surgery, the surgeon is guided directly to the site of the tumor, minimizing any disturbance to normal brain tissue.

  • Before concluding the surgical procedure the iMRI provides evidence that all tumor tissue has been removed, minimizing the risk of incomplete tumor removal and the potential need for additional surgical procedures.

By minimizing the risk to normal brain tissue and maximizing the ability to completely remove all tumor cells, this technology improves surgical outcomes and recovery.

Intraoperative Computed Tomography (iCT)


The SpineSUITE, the second smart operating suite at Sacred Heart Hospital combines the strength of the iCT with BrainLAB navigational technology providing high-resolution images in real time to our neurosurgical teams enabling them to perform extremely complex spine and trauma surgeries. The iCT allows our neurosurgeons to:

  • see precisely where they are on the spine at any given time
  • use smaller spinal exposures when performing surgery
  • place spinal implants in a safer, more effective way and reduce reoperation rates to zero
  • remove blood clots in cases of head trauma or in patients suffering certain types of stroke


Life-Saving Radiology


Mechanical Embolus Removal of Cerebral Ischemia (MERCI) Retrieval System

The MERCI retrieval system is the first medical device approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to physically remove blood clots from the brains of people experiencing a certain type of stroke. Sacred Heart Hospital is the only hospital in western Wisconsin to offer the MERCI Retrieval System, which provides hope when the window of opportunity for conventional drug therapy has closed.

Intra-Arterial Cerebral Thrombolysis

Sacred Heart Hospital is also the only hospital in the area to offer a lifesaving intra-arterial cerebral thrombolysis procedure using imaging technology to help physicians detect and then dissolve blood clots in the brain. 





We are the first hospital in the area to offer PET-CT scans. A PET-CT is a scan that combines the images from a positron emission tomography (PET) scan and a computed tomography (CT) scan. Both scans are done at the same time. These scans are used to detect and determine the stage of cancer, determine whether cancerous cells have spread, and evaluate the effectiveness of cancer treatments. The scan is also used to guide some types of biopsies.

Positron Emission Tomography (PET) studies metabolic activity and body function, while Computed Tomography (CT) provides detailed anatomy and structure. Combined, these technologies help physicians diagnose many diseases, such as Parkinson’s Disease and Huntington’s disease, before they become apparent with other imaging examinations. With PET/CT, both exams are performed at the same time and can be used to pinpoint, for example, both the location of cancer and its growth rate. It can also be used to help diagnose the extent of a stroke or Alzheimer’s disease, and to assess heart function.

Our PET/CT’s extremely high resolution pictures give us a better chance at catching a variety of cancers in their earliest stages: whether breast, esophageal, cervical, melanoma, lymphoma, lung, colorectal, head and neck, or ovarian. Knowing more, and knowing it earlier, helps us together build the treatment plan that makes the most sense for whatever you’re facing.



Full-Field Digital Mammography 



  • allows for faster and more accurate images  
  • shortens exam times and significantly improves comfort and convenience
  • gives our physicians the ability to manipulate images for more accurate detection of breast cancer
  • improves the contrast between dense and non-dense breast tissue
  • is most effective and recommended for women younger than 50, those with dense breasts and those who are pre-menopausal or peri-menopausal
  • permits images to be transmitted over the phone lines or a network for remote consultation with other physicians


3D Mammography—Breast Tomosynthesis


3D mammography or breast tomosynthesis complements standard 2D digital mammography and is performed at the same time with the same system. During the 3D part of the exam, an x-ray arm sweeps in a slight arc over the breast, taking multiple images. High-powered computing converts these digital breast images into a stack of very thin layers or “slices” to build a 3-dimensional mammogram. This 3D image allows our radiologist to examine the breast tissue image one millimeter at a time.


Mammatome-Assisted Breast Biopsy


If a lump or abnormality is detected, our physicians can conduct a minimally invasive mammatome-assisted breast biopsy. This procedure involves taking sample tissue from the suspicious area to determine whether the abnormality or lump is cancerous. A biopsy is currently the only way to accurately diagnose breast cancer. It is important to remember that most breast biopsies do not turn out to be cancer and that although a biopsy may be frightening, the results can provide much needed peace of mind. Mammatome-assisted breast biopsies:

  • allow for precise analysis with minimal pain, scarring and recovery time
  • usually take less than an hour
  • permit patients to return to their normal daily activities immediately

Nuclear Medicine


In nuclear medicine imaging, very small amounts of radioactive isotopes are taken internally. Then, external detectors (gamma cameras) capture and form images from the radiation emitted by the isotopes to detect disease. This process is unlike a diagnostic X-ray where external radiation is passed through the body to form an image.


Other Imaging Options


Bone Densitometer

A small amount of radiation is used to measure bone density.


An ultrasound examination of the heart.

Interventional Radiology

Our physicians use interventional radiological imaging technologies to diagnose blockages in arteries and treat them with balloons, stents and catheter-delivered medications.

Ultrasound Imaging

Also called sonography, ultrasound involves exposing part of the body to high-frequency sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of the body.

Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS)

This system acquires, transmits, stores, retrieves and displays digital images and related information from a variety of imaging sources and communicates the information over a network for physicians to access.