A new high definition body scanner is giving U.K. doctors the clearest ever view inside the human body — helping them spot problems before people suffer heart attacks, Sky News reported Monday.
The scanner generates pictures of diseased arteries in the heart that are twice as clear as older machines.
It means doctors at Plymouth's Derriford Hospital in the South West of England can identify problems at an early stage, long before patients suffer a heart attack or even develop any symptoms.
"When we started doing the heart research in 2002, we used to struggle to see the blood vessels, let alone see the narrowings within them," Professor of radiology, Carl Roobottom, said. "Now, we have a technique that can see to within a fraction of a millimeter."
In just five seconds, the scanner takes 220 X-rays, each of them a cross section of the heart. Computers then turn the raw snapshots into a 3D image.
Doctors can add color to distinguish between different types of tissue, strip away layers that obscure problem areas, and rotate or flip the image to get the best possible view.