What is a CT scan?
CT scan or computed tomography in simple words is a better version of a simple x-ray. It takes a series of X-ray scans and then combines them using computer processing and provides a cross-sectional image of the bones, blood vessels, muscles and tissues. Thus a CT scan can be used to obtain more information than a regular x-ray. In general, a CT scan can be used for any part of the body but it finds its use in finding internal injuries or bleeding of blood vessels in case of an automobile accident or any other form of trauma. It can also be used to target or pinpoint tumours for preparing before a surgery.
How does a CT scan work?
The person requesting a CT scan is first supposed to take it in a reputed hospital or a good radiology clinic as the equipment is very costly and minute changes in the values can affect the body. The doctor might ask the patient to take the scan in an empty stomach. The scan starts after the patient changes to the clothing provided by the hospital. This is important as the clothing or the person shouldn’t contain any metallic objects.
Then the patient is asked to rest in a table which will be moved into a circular slot in the CT scan machine. The scan begins after the technician confirms the person stays calm and does not move during the scan. A narrow beam of x-rays is used to scan the body of the person and this is done several times to ensure a perfect image. People are provided with a panic button in case they feel claustrophobic.
In this case, the scan is stopped and the person is given the option of taking the scan after sedation. So if there is no movement and the person remains calm during the test they will be led outside and are asked to eat in the time results are prepared.
What are the uses of a CT scan?
CT scans are asked by doctors for a variety of reasons. Some of them are
- To identify and pinpoint the location and the other important data about tumours, blood clots, infections or excessive fluid accumulation in the body.
- To identify any internal injuries or leakage in the blood vessels in case of an accident or any other physical trauma.
- It can help find the existence of diseases like cancer, heart diseases, emphysema or other diseases that might reach a critical stage to show signs or symptoms.
- With a good CT scan, complex bone fractures and muscle tumours can be found with ease.
- Can help identify certain data that aids in surgery or autopsy, etc.
- Effectiveness of treatments like chemotherapy and others can be seen with the help of a CT scan.
What are the other procedures with a CT scan?
The use of a contrast material like barium sulphate or iodine sulphate to help highlight tissues, muscles and other organs. There are 3 ways to take the contrast substances and based on the target area, the method of taking is chosen from an injection, oral consumption and enema. After completion of the scan, lots of fluids are required to be taken to remove them through the kidney.
Risks associated with CT scans
Radiation exposure is the main risk of CT scan that people are worried about. As an increased amount of x-ray radiation is used than a general x-ray, the additional information it provides outweighs the potential risks it has. The least amount of radiation required to obtain the required information is suggested by the doctor and the radiologists also get second opinions from other doctors to keep the patient safe from radiation exposure.
Although CT scans do not affect unborn babies, using an MRI or ultrasound is safer compared to using a CT scan. There aren’t any harmful effects to babies from a CT scan but doctors tend to avoid it.
Allergic reactions to contrast material are not so commonly observed. But sometimes the body might react mildly to the dye used for the scan and lead to rashes or itchiness in the skin. In very rare cases the reactions can be life-threatening.
Where to take a CT scan?
In general, there are many hospitals and radiology clinics around the country that are properly equipped with all the necessary tools for a CT scan. With the number being more in metropolitan cities and larger towns, taking a CT scan in Bangalore is advisable as the city is known for its hospitals and very professional treatment methods. The procedure being very important, it is better to take a clear scan with sophisticated latest machines for the best result. With the use of the latest equipment, the radiation is also reduced and thus decrease the chance of any side effects.
Cost of a CT scan
The cost of a CT scan can be a little high and depends on the area to be scanned. With the use of complex sophisticated instruments, major hospitals provide a CT scan for a lesser price. The price is lesser in major metropolitan cities as the procedure has become more common and less risky. By choosing a professional who has experience in radiology, the scan becomes more easy to take and also costs lesser. The ct scan cost in Bangalore is found to be less due to the availability of a large number of hospitals providing the scan.
With healthcare being in the latest internet age, anything and everything can be found online with just the tap of a button. Data about the importance and risks associated with a CT scan can be looked by before taking the scan. By consulting a doctor for a general health check-up from time to time, can help identify diseases like cancer, tumours, etc in the initial stages with the use of a CT scan. So it is advisable to maintain a health conscience atmosphere and stay healthy.