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Knowing the details of a CT scan and its need in Diagnosis

by Charlee

The CT scan is otherwise also known as the CAT scan. The CT scan was initially called CAT scan, it was named so, by the scientist who invented the technology. The full form of the CT and CAT scan is Computed tomography and computed axial tomography respectively. The CT scan works on the ionising radiation principle. The ionising radiations penetrate through your body cells and tissues. These radiations are then captured by the CT scan machine receptors.  The signals are therefore transmitted through the machine to displays on the computer screen. The scan images are produced in a cross sectional form known as slices. The slices contain the pictures of the area to be observed. Images can show bones and soft tissues of the intended area.

A low cost CT scan can be used for various purposes for example

  • To determine any bone disorder including bone tumor, fracture, or cancer.
  • It can help locate the position and area that is affected by infection, blood clot, or tumor exactly.
  • It can be used as a guided procedure.
  • It can help determine conditions pertaining to the lungs, liver, heart, etc.
  • It is sufficiently effective in yielding information that can help build cancer treatment or other treatments.
  • It can also help your doctor to view any internal injuries or internal bleeding.

The CT scan can be done as a contrast based study or as a non contrast based study as well. The contrast based studies involve an injection of a contrast agent into your body through the arm or hand. The contrast can help represent the scan images in a more detailed manner than the non contrast based studies. Contrast can be administered into your body through an intravenous route or through an oral route.

The CT scan holds certain risks as the contrast can briefly cause allergic reactions and irritations in your body. These allergic reactions start by causing the feeling of warmth, redness, or itching at the site of injection. You should inform the diagnostic centre near you as soon as you experience the first sign of an allergic reaction so that it can be managed timely. Sometimes, on very rare occasions the allergic reaction can progress to a life threatening situation. The results of your CT scan can be available online as some diagnostic centres provide online report delivery as well, or you will need to go and collect your report from the center. In both these cases, the reports are made available till maximum of 2-3 working days after the test.

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