CT or Computed Tomography is a useful , non-invasive diagnostic medical exam that combines the benefits of X-rays and computers. CT scans also previously known as CAT (Computer Aided Tomography) scans, have been into practice successfully for over three decades.
A CT scan generates 2D images of the body part on which the scan is performed. Using a computer, these 2-D images can further be presented as 3-D pictures for in-depth clinical evaluations. The actual scan process or acquiring CT images may take few seconds to few minutes depending on the body part and the machine being used. However, the post-processing of the CT images may take longer.
Depending upon the type of scan and the reason for performing the scan, very often a solution called “contrast” may need to be injected to the patient undergoing the CT scan. The images obtained after administering the contrast provide additional valuable information about the body part being scanned. It is important to inform the scan technologist beforehand in case the patient has any allergies, especially to iodine-based products.
The most commonly performed CT scans are
- CT Scan of Brain and Head
- CT Scan of Chest mainly for the Lung
- CT Scan of Abdomen and/or Pelvis
- CT Scan of Neck
- Cardiac CT for coronary arteries
- CT Scan of Spine and Joints
- CT Angiography
The primary reasons for conducting a CT scan are
- Head injury, stroke, bleeds and tumors
- Lung and airway diseases
- Soft-tissue masses in the neck and chest especially lymph node enlargement
- All abdominal and pelvic conditions involving the organs like Liver, Gall-bladder, Pancreas, Spleen, Kidneys, Bladder and some intestinal diseases/tumors.
- Coronary artery calcium and screening of coronary blood flow.
- Structural abnormalities of the Spine, Joints and all bones.
- 3D imaging of blood vessel anatomy for innumerable Vascular condition
- CT guided procedures such as biopsies, drainages and other treatments.