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Testing helps diagnose conditions and determine treatment

Asante has a sophisticated set of diagnostic tools and testing available for determining the root cause of pain and evaluating the best treatment option for each patient. Asante’s imaging programs are supervised by board-certified radiologists who ensure that testing standards are met and offers guidance on complex cases. The technologists who administer the tests at our imaging facilities are highly trained, exceeding state requirements with advanced certifications in bone-density scanning, computerized axial tomography, magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasound. The tests described here are some of the more common diagnostic procedures Asante offers.


There are many sophisticated tools, such as computerized axial tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasound and X-rays, that provide a relatively noninvasive way to take a look inside the body. Asante’s digital imaging system provides electronic images in amazing clarity. Doctors can now enlarge images on a computer monitor, enabling them to see detailed pictures of the body like never before. And you no longer have to wait for film to develop, which means you get faster and more-accurate test results. With digital images it’s easy to share test results with other physicians and facilities involved in your care.


Arthrography is a type of X-ray used to examine a joint, such as the knee or hip, when standard X-rays are not adequate. Conventional arthrography is the X-ray examination of a joint that uses a form of X-ray called fluoroscopy and an injection of contrast material containing iodine. When iodine contrast is injected directly into the joint, it fills the entire joint and becomes clearly visible during X-ray evaluation, allowing the radiologist to assess the anatomy and the function of the joint. Alternative methods of arthrography examinations use magnetic resonance imaging or computerized axial tomography.

Bone density scan

A bone density scan uses X-ray technology to measure the strength of bone mineral in a person’s body. Bone density scans can help diagnose osteoporosis and determine a person’s risk of developing the disease.

Computerized axial tomography

Computerized axial tomography (CT) is a diagnostic procedure that uses X-ray equipment in conjunction with a computer to create three-dimensional cross-sectional images of the body. The CT equipment displays detailed images of organs, bones, and other tissues in more detail than standard X-rays. Asante offers some of the most advanced CT technology available in the region including a 512-slice CT. Our CT program is accredited by the American College of Radiology, and the technologists have advanced training and certification.

Magnetic resonance imaging

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses a combination of magnets, radio waves and computer technology to create images of the inner body. Asante’s MRI program and machines are accredited by the American College of Radiology, and the technologists have advanced training and certification in MRI.


An ultrasound uses sound waves with frequencies above those that humans can hear. The ultrasound sends sound waves traveling into the body, which are then reflected back as images. Orthopedic surgeons can use ultrasound technology for diagnostic purposes and injection guidance during procedures.


Images produced by X-rays are due to the different absorption rates of different tissues. For example, bones, soft tissues and even air show up as different shades on an X-ray. X-rays are often used as the first step in diagnosing injuries of the extremities but may also be used to evaluate other problems involving bones and soft tissues.


Sometimes it is necessary to remove a small piece of muscle tissue or bone marrow to get additional information about what might be causing pain or tenderness. During a biopsy a small sample of tissue is removed and sent to a lab, where a pathologist examines it under a microscope for abnormalities.

Bone biopsy

During a bone biopsy, a small incision is made in the skin and a biopsy needle is used to take a bone sample. The most common reasons for a bone biopsy are to distinguish between benign and malignant bone tumors and to identify other abnormalities. A bone biopsy may also be performed to determine the cause of bone pain and tenderness.

Muscle biopsy

A muscle biopsy involves the removal of a small piece of muscle tissue for examination. This may be done with a needle or a small incision. The tissue and the cells from the muscle are then viewed microscopically to diagnose abnormalities.

Other tests

Bone densitometry

Bone densitometry is used to measure bone density. It can help diagnose osteoporosis and also determine the risk of fractures.

Joint aspiration

This test uses a needle and a syringe to remove synovial fluid from the space around a joint. It is most frequently done on the knee and is used to diagnose suspected diseases or conditions in a joint. Joint aspirations are mostly commonly done to diagnose arthritis.


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As the largest health care provider in nine counties, Asante provides comprehensive medical care to more than 600,000 people throughout southern Oregon and northern California. Our facilities include Asante Ashland Community Hospital in Ashland, Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center in Medford, Asante Three Rivers Medical Center in Grants Pass, Asante Physician Partners and additional health care partnerships throughout the region.