April 2018


Ask Your Doctor to Always Schedule Your Medical Imaging at The Radiology Clinic.


Compassionate Staff

The Radiology Clinic's caring staff recognizes that diagnostic testing can cause apprehension and uneasiness. Our technologists will take the time to explain exactly what you can expect, and someone is always available to assist you with questions or concerns. 


We are open from 7am to 7pm Monday through Friday and 8am to noon on Saturdays. Easily accessible from McFarland Boulevard, we are located just north of the Black Warrior River and ample free parking provides easy access to the clinic.

Depth of Experience

Our board-certified radiologists work with trained technologists to provide a compassionate, expert imaging experience. Radiologists are physicians who have received 4 to 6 years of advanced training after completing their medical degrees. Radiology technologists, who work closely with radiologists, receive 2 to 4 years of training in radiologic technology.


Happy National Pet Day!

As much as we love our pets too, we don't do any medical imaging on your canine and feline companions. This month we are talking about our kind of PET scans, Positron Emission Tomography. It is a non-invasive nuclear medicine scan that is able to detect and evaluate certain medical conditions. Nuclear medicine examinations provide unique information, including details on both function and anatomic structure of the body that is often unattainable using other modalities. For many diseases, nuclear medicine scans yield the most useful information needed to make a diagnosis or to determine appropriate treatment. Our PET/CT is designed to provide better imaging data while also increasing your comfort and convenience by producing two
images during one scan.


What Actually Happens During a PET Scan?

When you arrive for your appointment, you will be given an injection of a small amount of radiation mixed with glucose. Glucose (sugar) is a common substance every cell in our body needs in order to function. However, cancer cells will use the sugar more rapidly than normal cells and will be shown as highlighted areas on the images we capture. After your injection, you will have to wait in a dimly lit room for approximately 45 minutes. This is to ensure the glucose can distribute itself throughout your body. There is no sensation with the glucose, so this will not be painful. Next, you will lie on a table that moves through a doughnut-shaped machine (just like a CT) while your images are being taken. This portion will only take 20-35 minutes, but it is very important that you remain still. A technologist will always be available for assistance if you need it.


Is There Any Special Preparation Required for a PET Scan?

You should expect to spend around 2 hours at the clinic the day of your exam. Please bring your insurance cards and a photo ID with you.

The day before the exam, please avoid caffeine, sugars, and carbohydrates. You should also drink 80 ounces of water throughout your day. Suggested foods for the high protein/no carbohydrate diet we ask you follow include: beef, fish, chicken, eggs, bacon, tuna, any green vegetables, peanut butter, cheese and cottage cheese.

The day of the exam, please drink 20 ounces of water and avoid all other liquids and food. You can take your medications as prescribed unless you are insulin dependent or require food to take it. You should also wear loose fitting/comfortable clothing and avoid wearing any metal or jewelry.

We ask that you follow all of these guidelines so that we can perform your test and capture the best images possible for an accurate diagnosis. If you are on a fluid restricted diet or have any other concerns or questions, please contact our Nuclear Medicine department at (205) 345-2563.


How Do I Schedule a PET Scan?

Your doctor has to order a PET scan for you, but you can ask your doctor to schedule it at The Radiology Clinic. We are open from 7am to 7pm Monday through Friday and 8am to noon on Saturdays. Due to the nature of the medicine used during a PET scan, appointment cancellations must be made by 5pm the day before your exam. If you are pregnant, think you may be pregnant, or currently nursing, please let our staff know 24 hours before your appointment. Our Nuclear Medicine department is happy to answer any questions you have prior to your exam. You can contact the department at (205) 345-2563.



Meet Dr. Elizabeth D. Caldwell - One of Our Radiologists

Dr. Elizabeth Caldwell, a native of Grenada, MS, has lived in Tuscaloosa since 1996. She received an undergraduate degree in physics from The University of Mississippi and a medical degree from University of Mississippi Medical School. She then completed a diagnostic radiology residency at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, and then a fellowship in neuroradiology at The University of Alabama at Birmingham. Dr. Caldwell practices almost all aspects of general radiology and specializes in neuroradiology. She maintains board certification through the American College of Radiology.
“We provide a variety of tests at the Radiology Clinic to meet the imaging needs of our community. One of these tests is a PET/CT scan. While an MRI or CT scan shows how part of the body looks, a PET scan reveals how it is functioning. This is vital for detecting cancer, evaluating the effectiveness of treatment, and assessing brain abnormalities. While a PET scan does require the patient to receive radioactive material, the dose is small and the risk of the scan is very low compared to the potential benefits. For the most common type of PET exam, the patient is injected with radioactive glucose (sugar) and then rests quietly in our peaceful, comfortable holding room before being scanned. We are then able to produce a combined PET scan and CT scan into one image which will be interpreted by a radiologist with specialized training in PET/CT imaging. Because glucose and insulin levels in the body can affect image quality, it is important that the patient strictly follow our dietary and diabetes management instructions the day before and day of the scan to ensure a high quality image."