CT Scan Defined:

CT (computed tomography or CAT scan) is a non-invasive and painless imaging technology that uses X-ray equipment and computers to create detailed, cross-sectional images of an area of the body. CT scans are frequently used to evaluate abnormalities such as blocked blood vessels and to locate infections or tumors. CT scans are a valuable tool in minimally invasive interventional radiology procedures.

CT Benefits:

  • CT scanning is painless, non-invasive and accurate.
  • A major advantage of CT is its ability to image bone, soft tissue and blood vessels at the same time.
  • Unlike conventional X-rays, CT scanning provides very detailed images of many types of tissue as well as the lungs, bones, and blood vessels.
  • CT, unlike MRI, can be performed even if you have an implanted medical device.
  • A diagnosis determined through CT scanning may eliminate the need for exploratory surgery and surgical biopsy.

The CT Experience:

The patient lies down on the scanning table and is positioned comfortably with their arms at their sides and their head cradled in the headrest. The area of your body to be scanned must be positioned in the middle of the scanner ring. You will be asked to remain as still as possible during the scan and to hold your breath during each phase of the scan.

You will hear clicking and buzzing noises as the mechanism in the scanner moves around your body. There are no after effects from the CT scan. You should feel just as you did before the scan.

Preparation:

Metal and electronic devices such as watches, jewelry, cellular phones, and credit cards must be removed before the exam.

For some CT scans you may be required to drink a barium or contrast agent or you may be injected intravenously with a contrast agent.