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Keep Your Orthopedic Practice Alive Through Diversification

Medical providers are always looking for ways to create optimal patient outcomes while lowering costs. Dwindling reimbursement can dissuade people from pursuing medical careers—or their chosen specialty. Medical Student Education published a study finding 15 percent of fourth-year medical school students reported payment as the primary factor driving their career choices.

These concerns pose unique challenges for orthopedic surgeons. If we fail to improve revenues for orthopedic practices, then many of these practices will fail. If that happens—at the same time baby-boomers are reaching the age of needing more musculoskeletal care—our nation will experience a true healthcare crisis.

Not long ago, developing a financially successful practice hinged on a physician’s clinical expertise. But expertise alone will no longer serve to attract patients and generate revenue. Our long-term goal should be to generate revenue from multiple sources, diversifying practices to ensure practice viability.

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, AAOS, created a 45-page guide, Enhancing Your Practice’s Revenues: Pearls and Pitfalls (A Primer for Orthopedic Surgeons), recommending orthopedic practices offer in-office imaging.

Imaging has become an integral part of many orthopaedic offices,” the report says. “In-house imaging provides an ancillary revenue stream, improves practice efficiency, and may play a role in overall patient satisfaction. The types of imaging services offered vary depending on a variety of factors, which include but are not limited to practice size, geographical location, political considerations, and orthopaedic specialties represented in the office.

Revenues from imaging services can add significantly to your bottom line. A reasonably busy MRI, for example, may generate more revenue and profit for the practice than an orthopaedic surgeon, while X-ray often generates an additional $50,000-$100,000 or more of operating profit per orthopaedic surgeon.”

For orthopaedists, the history and physical has long been key to the successful diagnosis of patients with musculoskeletal patients. Traditional film X-rays provided them an additional diagnosis tool. Imaging technology continues to evolve, allowing orthopaedists to diagnose diseases, disorders and conditions more quickly and with even greater accuracy. The result is a win-win situation for patients and doctors alike.

The CurveBeam pedCAT is designed to fit into your practice and workflow, with a footprint of about 4’ x 5’. The unit plugs into a standard wall outlet and gives you the bilateral, weight-bearing 3-dimentional views of the foot and ankle you need to create a comprehensive treatment plan.

The pedCAT scans are reimbursed through CPT code 73700 – CT lower extremity without contrast.

The pedCAT is a compact, ultra-low dose CT imaging system that is ideal for orthopedic and podiatric clinics. Patients benefit from the convenience of point-of-care advanced diagnostic imaging, scan time is one minute, and the pedCAT automatically generates all standard X-ray views in addition to the full CT volume. All of this contributes both to improved patient care and the bottom line.

To learn more about how the pedCAT can enhance your practice, visit CurveBeam.com today!

A pedCAT Scan: Less Radiation Than A Serving of Brazil Nuts

Most people may not realize it, but humans are exposed to natural background radiation all the time. The source is naturally occurring radioactive materials and cosmic radiation from outer space. Geography plays a huge factor in how much radiation a person is exposed to, but the average  American adult receives an effective dose of about 3000 microSieverts a year.

So how does the Curvebeam pedCAT scan compare to radiation from other activities? See below!

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The pedCAT Weight-Bearing CT Scan Put CurveBeam a Step Ahead of the Competition

It’s hard to forget about your feet—socks and shoes, not to mention pain at the end of a long workday. As the foundation of your mobility, foot health is vital to overall health. But foot health involves more than just keeping them clean and dry. It is vital to wear properly fitted shoes—custom insoles (avoid flimsy over-the-counter insoles) and supportive sandals are also a good idea. In fact, feet are so important to us that they even get their own specialists.

An expert in the field of podiatry, Dr. Kyle Kinmon of Boca Raton, FL recently shared some advice on WPTV for maintaining optimal foot health. Kinmon used part of his television segment to introduce viewers to the latest pedCAT technology from CurveBeam: a weight-bearing CT scan for diagnosing foot and ankle issues.

In fact, Kinmon’s office is the first in South Florida to offer a 3D foot scanner, the pedCAT technology from CurveBeam. Introducing the tool to TV viewers on WPTV, Kinmon said, “This is called the pedCAT. It’s the newest technology in the world of foot and ankle. It’s a weight-bearing CT scanner that, in 19 seconds, will provide us with every possible image you could want to see in the foot and ankle.”

To learn more about Dr. Kinmon’s practice, please visit www.certifiedfoot.com.

Dr. Kinmon, a fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, has contributed to research in the field of podiatry with many peer-reviewed publications, including an award-winning article in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association and an article on pediatric flat foot for New Balance shoe company’s health line. Kinmon is also the Founding Director of Residency Training for Bethesda Memorial Hospital’s three-year Podiatric Surgical Residency Program, further supporting residents in surgery at three area residency training programs.

While Kinmon is highly trained in foot and ankle surgery, he always considers surgery the last resort. In the vast majority of cases, surgery is not required, and the condition is resolved using conservative treatment alone. Still, even for someone as skilled as Dr. Kinmon, diagnosing foot and ankle issues can be challenging.

The pedCAT’s bilateral, weight-bearing 3D views of the foot and ankle give specialists the information they need to create comprehensive treatment plans. Its compact (4’ x 5’), ultra-low dose (2-5 micro Sieverts per scan) CT imagine system plugs into the wall and is ideal for orthopedic and podiatric clinics. Scan time is one minute, and the pedCAT automatically generates all standard X-ray views in addition to the full CT volume. The pedCAT is PACS/DICOM compatible and supports DICOM modality worklist (HIS/RIS) and PACS integration.

One can definitely understand why Kinmon was excited to share the news about pedCAT with television viewers. With the pedCAT from CurveBeam, his job is now a lot easier and his diagnoses more accurate than ever.

To learn more about the exciting new pedCat from CurveBeam, visit http://curvebeam.com/products/pedcat today!

CurveBeam Announces FDA 510(k) Clearance for InReach Cone Beam CT Imaging System for the Upper Extremities

InReachMay 8, 2017 – Warrington, Penn. – CurveBeam announced it has received FDA 510(k) clearance for the InReach, a Cone Beam CT imaging system primarily designed for the hand, wrist &elbow; & lower extremities in non-weight bearing position.

The InReach is an ultra-compact CT scanner that provides high-contrast 3D datasets of bony anatomy, which could potentially replace radiographs as a first line of diagnosis.                                                                                              

The InReach is ideal for the point-of-care because of its small footprint, its self-shielded design, and standard power requirements. Point-of-care 3D imaging allows for faster diagnosis and more accurate treatment plans.

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“The InReach will revolutionize the speed and accuracy of assessment of upper extremity conditions that specialists have traditionally found challenging to diagnose with plain X-Ray, such as scaphoid fractures,” said CurveBeam President & CEO, Arun Singh. “The InReach continues the company’s mission to elevate advanced diagnostic imaging capabilities to enhance orthopedic care.”

The InReach is designed with patient comfort in mind. Patients’ hand, wrist or elbow is positioned in a height-adjustable bore while in standing or sitting position. The unit can also accommodate non-weight bearing, lower limb imaging. Scan times are less than 30 seconds.

The InReach device is supplemented by CubeVue, CurveBeam’s custom visualization software.  CubeVue gives orthopedic specialists unprecedented access to multi-planar slices and vivid 3D renderings of the anatomy previously not easily accessible to specialists. CubeVue’s Insta-X feature provides Digitally Reconstructed Radiographs, potentially eliminating the need for radiographic exams altogether. 

The InReach is the second extremity CT imaging system CurveBeam has introduced to the market.

CurveBeam is the leader in Weight-Bearing extremity CT imaging, starting with the introduction of its pioneer product, the pedCAT, in 2012. The pedCAT is the only CT system that allows for bilateral, true weight bearing imaging of the lower extremities. Since 2012, the pedCAT has been integrated into leading foot & ankle orthopedic and podiatric practices around the world.

CurveBeam is currently developing its next generation multi-extremity device, the LineUP, which will provide bilateral Weight-Bearing images of the knees in addition to feet, as well as hand, wrist & elbow. CurveBeam anticipates the LineUP will be submitted for FDA review by July, 2017.