CT Scan

CT Scan Main Content Section

a woman getting a CT scan

What is a CT Scan?

A computed tomography scan, also called a CAT scan, uses a computer and rotating X-ray to take a series of images of the body. These pictures, taken from multiple angles, create more detailed images of your body’s blood vessels, tissues and bones. Your doctor is able to gain much more information from CT scans than a typical X-ray.

What Should I Expect at a CT Scan?

CT scans generally don’t take more than a few minutes and are painless. Depending on what part of your body is being scanned, you may be asked to fast for a few hours. For certain cases, you may drink or have an injection of a contrast material, or special dye, before the scan. This contrast helps produce more detail in your images and allows your doctor to see an area more clearly. You may feel some mild warmth if you receive an injection.

You will also remove any metal object you may be wearing, such as watches, jewelry, belts and glasses. Scans typically require some clothing be removed or a full hospital gown.

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