Stony Brook Medicine’s acquisition of the machine, which produces high-quality images with minimal radiation exposure, was made possible through a gift from the Butkevich family.
Stony Brook Medicine’s Department of Orthopaedics proudly houses Suffolk County’s only Emerging Orthogonal System (EOS) machine, which can significantly reduce radiation exposure by up to 90 percent. Thanks to the generous support of Setauket residents Sergey Butkevich, PhD and his wife, Irina, the department purchased this innovative imaging alternative that is invaluable for treating chronic skeletal and musculoskeletal conditions, such as scoliosis.
The unique design and low-dose imaging of this machine make it ideal for pediatric orthopaedic patients who are more sensitive to the harmful effects of radiation and often need multiple x-rays over time. This is something that Diane Sparks can relate to. Her 10-year-old daughter, Alice, was diagnosed with scoliosis at only 13 months old, and she has been a patient of Stony Brook orthopaedic surgeon James M. Barsi, MD, since. “Knowing that the radiation exposure is much lower than a standard x-ray puts my mind at ease,” Sparks says. She adds that having this option has been a much more pleasurable experience for Alice, who has frequent checkups to monitor the progress of her spine condition.
According to Dr. Barsi, there have been many benefits over traditional x-rays since the machine was installed. “It is a faster scan with less radiation, and it is much easier to use. With regular x-rays, many parents were not as amenable, but knowing there is minimal radiation, they are comfortable having their child step into the machine for scans,” he explains.
The EOS imaging system provides full 2D and 3D images of patients, which can be used to make accurate diagnoses and treatment plans for patients with spine disorders.
Dr. Butkevich says he is thrilled to be able to make a contribution that will help so many people. He notes that he has two children, and he understands how important it is to limit their exposure to radiation.
I am very happy that I was able to help in a small but meaningful way to help reduce x-ray radiation exposure to Long Island children during their orthopaedic care.”
According to Dr. Barsi, for every three x-rays, an EOS machine only needs to take one image. While technicians must stitch together each image with traditional x-rays, the EOS machine eliminates that step from the scanning process. He says the machine can accommodate a child or an adult as long as they can sit or stand, and each scan takes only three to 10 seconds.
“Seeing patients have a good experience as a result of someone’s generosity is both gratifying and inspiring,” Dr. Barsi says of Dr. Butkevich and his family’s support.
This generous philanthropic gift is not the first by Dr. Butkevich. In fact, many of the donations he has made over the past 12 years have helped support pediatric healthcare at Stony Brook.
“At Stony Brook Children’s Hospital, we are dedicated to providing our patients with compassionate care using leading-edge technology,” says Carolyn Milana, MD, chair of the Department of Pediatrics. “When people help us purchase equipment that we need, it allows us to expand our services in ways we couldn’t before.”
Dr. Butkevich also serves on the Stony Brook Children’s Hospital Advancement Council. Since Stony Brook Children’s is his family’s local hospital, he says staying involved is important to him.
Dr. Butkevich is also an avid supporter of the Staller Center for the Arts and serves on the advisory board. “Everyone in our family loves theater, live music and dance,” he says. “The Staller Center brings the same quality of live theater that Broadway does, but it’s closer to home.” In fact, he and his daughters actually performed in The Nutcracker on the Staller Center stage. He admits that getting up on that stage was frightening at first, but it was a thrilling experience since the stage is so addictive. “I believe that having this quality of live entertainment is very important for a community, and we are lucky to have this cultural institution right on our doorstep,” he says.