The purpose of the Computed Tomography Scan also known as CT Scan is to diagnose the diseases and internal injuries of the body. It is the combined result of X-rays and a computer that provides a 3D image of the bones and soft tissues. It is beneficial as it is painless, and noninvasive, and easy to diagnose the internal conditions of the body.
A computerized tomography or CT scan provides the images that is the combination of a X- ray taken from the various angles throughout your targeted body part and computer processing that creates cross-sectional images or slices of the bones, soft tissues and blood vessels of the targeted part inside the body. It has proved to helpful in providing the detailed information as compared to the normal X-ray.
On addition, this machine is advantageous in numerous ways , but it has specifically designed and served the purpose of the knowing the details of the internal injuries of the people who may have severe internal trauma like any accidents, or never ending pain.
A CT scan is considered to be the progression in the medical area, as it is detects the exact injury, or disease of any part of the body and further that report can be used to plan a medical treatment accordingly.
When it is done
A medical health care professionals suggest for CT scan when;
- To check the point or site of infection, blood clot, or tumor, etc.
- To make the further strategy of treatment like surgery, radiation therapy or biopsy, etc.
- It is also helpful in diagnosing fractures in bones, tumors, bones and muscles disorders.
- Helpful to check the severe internal injuries.
- Effective in detecting and treating cancer and other organ specific injuries or conditions like heart disease, liver masses, lung infection.
At the time of the CT scan, the patient is exposed to minute amount of ionizing radiation, and this amount is greater than that of normal X-ray as the CT scan is used to deep and specific information of the internal body parts. The lowers dose of such ionizing are not harmful, although the higher amount usage may increase the risk of cancer.
The health care professionals uses the least dose to reduce the possibilities of mis-happenings that can cause due to radiations. It is also seen that these days new and faster machines needs less radiations than the older one, and if the patient is still anxious, they can discuss it with their doctor.
Moreover, for the pregnant women’s, other types of scan such as MRI and Ultrasound are used so that it may cause no ham to the growing fetus. So far no harmful effects have been seen to the infant and their mother.
There is a special dye known as ‘contrast material’ that is been recommended by the doctor. This is the kind of drink that is asked to drink before the patient is going for the test (CT scan), it can be even inserts’ through the vein or rectum. however, it may be allergic to a few rare cases.
The role of the contrast material is significant in blocking the X-rays and gives white appearance on images, which are ore focused on the targeted part such as blood vessels, spinal cord, intestine, etc.
As mentioned earlier, this contrast material is given either by mouth in order to scan the stomach or esophagus. Injection into the vein is given to the people who are been recommended to go for the scan of gall bladder, blood vessels, liver, urinary tract or blood vessels
Preparing for the scan
When the patient is about to undergo for the test, they are been asked to wear the hospital gown, instead of the clothes they are wearing. Even more, metal objects such as jewelry, eyeglasses, belts, wallets and dentures are been asked to remove as they may create hinderance while producing the scanned image. In addition, it is also suggested that one should be restrict themselves in eating or drinking a few hours before the examination.
At the time of scan
CT scanners are the machine having doughnut on its side, and a patient has to lie on a motorized table which is narrow, and slides and opens into a tunnel shape opening. To support the patient and maintain the stiffness for the creation of image, pillows and straps are used. There is a special cradle that holds the head while the head scan.
When the machine starts scanning the body, the scanner starts rotating along with detectors and X-ray tube around the patient. Each rotation produce multiple images of the targeted part of the body. These images are termed as ‘slices’, one can even the whirring and buzzing sounds that may be irritating for a few. A technologist will be there to observe you and will be communicating through the intercom and instruct you accordingly.
The scan will be completed within certain amount of time, and after that one can be as normal as earlier. However, if the contrast material was used while scanning, then the technologist will guide you accordingly. Even in some cases the patients are asked to wait in the test center form some more time, till they feel better or normal after scanning. It is asked to patient to drink lots of fluids such as water that will support in removal of the contrast material from the body.
CT images are multiple images produced of the targeted part, that was been scanned, this image is helpful in observing every possible aspect of that part and to understand the issue.
This is the electronic data files, that is generally reviewed on computer screen and can be interpreted and sent to the doctor as the hard copy of the print of the report.