There are many reasons why a doctor or specialist may request that you have CT Scan. CT scanning is ideal for showing the abdominal organs such as liver, kidneys, spleen and bowel, the pelvic and chest organs as well as brain structures. CT scans can also be used to show blood vessels and other soft tissues.
CT examinations are carried out by a trained MRT using sophisticated computer software and x-rays to gain cross sectional images of the body. The scanner itself looks like a giant ‘donut’ and having the scan involves lying on a cushioned table that is positioned within the ‘hole’ of the donut. Unlike an MRI scanner there is no ‘tunnel’. You will be asked to lie on a cushioned table and positioned so that the area of your body that is being scanned is in the best possible position. The table will move you automatically through the scanner. The scan itself is very short, usually taking only a few minutes.
Preparation: There are specific preparation needs for a CT scan depending upon what area of the body is being scanned. You will be provided with information relevant to the sort of scan you are having, at the time of booking your appointment.
You may have to arrive early for your scan and drink some liquid that aids the radiologists in interpreting your images. Sometimes you will be provided with some liquid and asked to drink this at home prior to coming for your scan.
Generally speaking, having a CT is quick and easy. Some CT scans are more involved. These are CT Colonography, Angiography or joint injections.
Contrast Media: Sometimes an injection of Contrast Media is needed to be able to visualise specific areas of the body. If you have allergies or breathing difficulties you need to let the staff know at the time of making your appointment.