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February 25, 1983

Improved imaging offers look at whole body

JAMA. 1983;249(8):994-996. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03330320008004

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Medical imaging's centennial is about a decade away, but there is much to celebrate already. More information is being extracted from more body areas for more purposes than ever before.

For the most part, the imaging equipment and techniques used to study the CNS (see last week's JAMA MEDICAL NEWS) are finding increasing uses elsewhere in the body. Among these, a relative newcomer to clinical diagnosis, the experimental technique of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), continues to hold much of the spotlight.

Said Ferdinando S. Buonanno, MD, of the Neurology Service, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Boston, at the American Association of Neurological Surgeons meeting in Honolulu: "NMR shows soft tissue very well, so it probably will have greater application outside the head. You can look at the abdomen, see kidney structure, blood vessels, tendons around muscles, and there's nothing short of cutting open and looking inside that comes close."

Juan M.