WHAT IS A CT SCAN?
Short for computerised axial tomography scan. A cross-sectional view of an internal body part made by a computer assembles a series of x-rays taken at different angles into a three-dimensional image. CT scans are used in medicine to help diagnose a disease or disorder.
Our radiology equipment is the first of its kind in Australia, delivering increased diagnostic sensitivity and specificity. The technology includes gout detection, kidney stone differentiation and bone oedema (which helps differentiate old and new fractures in osteoporotic patients), allowing clinical management pathways to be altered to the benefit of patients. The ‘Definition AS+ TwinBeam system’ also boasts lung perfusion maps for pulmonary embolism studies, which have seen detection rates increase by 33%.
Please advise us:
- If you have had an adverse reaction to a previous contrast injection or other drugs or if you have any renal impairment.
- If you are, or think you may be pregnant.
- If you have any metal around the area being examined (e.g jewellery, dentures, metal buttons etc)
- If you have had any previous injuries or surgery to the area being examined.
Please bring your referral, Medicare card and any previous imaging relating to the region being scanned.
- Abdomen & pelvis (liver, pancreas, adrenal glands, spleen, bowel, kidneys, bladder): Do not eat anything for 3 hours prior to your appointment. Stay well hydrated. Arrive 1 hour prior to your appointment to drink an oral contrast solution.
- Brain/head, soft tissue neck, chest & KUB (kidney, ureters & bladder): Nothing to eat for 3 hours prior to appointment.
- Angiogram: Nothing to eat for 3 hours prior to appointment.
- Spine & extremities: No preparation. If the patient is over 60 or they are diabetic a recent renal function test should be obtained, which is valid for 3 months.
After the preparation for your particular examination, you change into a gown (except for head scans), then lie on a bed which slides through the opening in the scanner. The bed will go through the scanner once for the planning scan, then once for each scan. Some scans such as liver CT may require multiple scans over a few minutes as the contrast flows through.
How long does it take?
After the preparation, the scan itself takes about 15 minutes. Time can change if the scan requires contrast.
Have a high fluid intake for 24 hours to flush out the contrast. After your examination, the images from your study will be burned to a DVD and given to you. A report, along with access to the images will be sent directly to your referring doctor. Wise Radiology will store digital copies of all studies on our secure database for comparison with any future examinations.
It is important that you return to your doctor promptly so that a management plan can be formulated.
Allergic reactions to contrast material can occur but significant reactions are rare, and generally respond to adrenaline. Our staff members are equipped and trained to treat contrast reactions.