Computed tomography has been invaluable in the diagnosis, treatment, and long term follow-up of a host of diseases for many years. MDCT uses X-ray to take multiple images of a region of your body and then a high speed computer linked to the CT scanner generates final images. When all the images are combined our radilogists and your doctor can perform a full examination of the region by looking at the images.
The recent development of the multi-detector scanner has further advanced the capability of CT, allowing for finer images and faster examination times. These new scanners open up whole new areas of the body to non-invasive examination, especially the large arteries and veins. MDCT scans are also useful in many disorders of the brain, ears, eyes, sinuses, and spine.
What to Expect
CT examinations are rapid, taking only a few seconds to a few minutes of actual scan time. Patients will be aware of a low, whirring sound during the scan, but otherwise feel nothing out of the ordinary.
Many CT examinations will require injection of contrast material to highlight the blood vessels and help distinguish normal from abnormal tissues.
Preparations and Precations
Please notify our staff before your scan if you have any of the following conditions:
- previous allergic reaction to X-ray contrast,
- multiple allergies of any kind,
- significant heart or lung disease, or
- impaired kidney function.
Also, please let us know if you are pregnant, nursing, or think that you might be pregnant.
Some types of CT examinations require a short period of fasting prior to the test. Abdominal and pelvic CT scans involve drinking a dilute solution of radiographic contrast material a few hours before the scans are obtained, in order to fill the small intestine and colon.