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CT Scan or Computer Axial Tomography
(CT or CAT) Imaging Procedure

Computed Tomography, or CT, is an X-ray examination performed by a special scanner and computer. It provides more detailed images of the body's tissues and vessels than conventional X-rays. The CT scanner takes pictures (images) of the body in multiple cross-sections or slices, similar to the slices in a loaf of bread, allowing visualization of images in three dimensions.    

This exam is a fast, painless method to view the health of tissues and vessels throughout
the body. It diagnoses diseases and disorders of the digestive system, brain, organs, urinary system, appendix, liver, spleen, pancreas and kidneys. It also locates or confirms the presence
of tumors, identifies sources of pain and diagnoses vascular disorders that can lead to stroke,
heart attack or kidney failure.

The technologist begins by positioning the patient on the CT examination table. A nurse or technologist will insert an intravenous (IV) line into a small vein in your hand or arm. To make
a clearer picture of certain parts of the body, a small dose of contrast material (X-ray dye) may be injected through the IV. The actual CT scanning takes between 5 and 10 minutes and the entire process is usually completed within one hour.

  • You may be asked to wear a gown during the exam or you may be allowed to wear
    your own clothing.
  • Women should always tell the technologist if there is any possibility that they are or might be pregnant or if they are breastfeeding.
  • You should inform the technologist of any allergies, medications or medical conditions.
  • Jewelry and other metallic accessories should be left at home if possible or removed
    prior to the exam, because they may interfere with the procedure.
  • The technologist may ask you to hold your breath briefly during the exam. You will need to remain still while the scan is being performed.