2001 Peachtree Rd., NE
Suite 575
Atlanta, Georgia, USA 30309
(404) 350-0106

CT Scans

Computerized tomography (CT or CAT scans) combines x-ray science with computer technology to produce more focused and informative images than traditional x-rays. CT scans produce clear pictures of bone, soft tissue, organs, intervertebral discs and the spinal cord. The images can be reproduced in black/gray/white tones or color. To enhance the image, a contrast medium (dye) can be injected into the patient during the test.

CT Scan

CT scans expose patients to significant levels of radiation. These levels are carefully monitored, and patient safety is always ensured. However, the radiation exposure is a concern, and as a result our physicians will only order a CT scan when it is an essential step in the diagnostic process.

How it Works
During the scan a series of x-rays are directed at specific angles through the body part being examined. A detector on the opposite side transmits the scan details to a computer, which analyzes the data and renders cross-sectional images of that body part. The cross-sectional images or “slices” are called tomograms. The images can be displayed on a monitor, stored as computer files or printed on ordinary x-ray film.

What to Expect
A CT Scan requires no special physical preparation. The patient does not need to restrict food or fluids prior to the test, unless a contrast medium (dye) will be used. If a contrast agent is to be used, the patient will be given individualized pre-test instructions.

The patient will be asked to remove jewelry or other metal objects and change into a medical gown.

The patient is positioned on the CT table and gently strapped into place to restrict movement. The patient is covered with a blanket (if cold) and the table is slid into the opening of the scanner. It is important that the patient remain as still as possible during the scan.

Patients who are claustrophobic may be given a mild sedative. Often, patients are offered a headset to listen to music as the scanner makes noise during rotation.

Adjacent to the room in which the CT scanner is located is the technician’s area. The technician is able to see and communicate with the patient through a large window during the entire procedure. The test takes about 30 to 60 minutes.