What is a CT?

Computed Tomography (CT) is a test that combines X-rays and computer scans. It creates detailed pictures of the body such as organs and blood vessels.

How Do I Prepare for a CT Scan?

CT Scans without contrast do not require special preparation. All jewelry and other metallic objects must be removed from the area being scanned. This includes metal that is often part of clothing such as snaps, belts and underwire bras. You should wear comfortable clothing. Tell your technician if you may be pregnant as your doctor will recommend another type of exam if you may be pregnant.

In certain cases, your doctor may recommend that you receive a special dye called contrast material. Because contrast materials carry a slight risk of causing an allergic reaction or adverse reaction, you should tell your doctor about:

  • Allergies to contrast materials, food, drugs, dyes, preservatives, or
  • Medications you are taking, including herbal supplements
  • Recent illnesses, surgeries, or other medical conditions
  • History of asthma and hay fever
  • History of heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, thyroid problems or sickle cell anemiaContrast can be given by mouth or injected through a vein.

What Should I Expect During a CT Scan?

Prior to your exam an imaging technician will ask a series of screening questions to determine if you are pregnant or have any medical conditions that will prevent you from receiving the exam. You will then lie down on a comfortable padded table that the imaging technician moves to the scanning position. The table will then move automatically through the scanner.

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What Happens After the CT Scan?

After the CT scan is complete you are free to leave and resume your normal activities.