Having a CT scan - Transcript | Cancer Research UK
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Having a CT scan - Transcript

A CT scan helps your doctor make a diagnosis, decide about what treatment you need or find out if your treatment is working.

This type of scan takes a series of x-rays and uses a computer to put them together.

Before your scan you may need to drink either half a litre of water or a type of dye called a contrast medium. This helps to make the scan clearer.

Before most scans you have a small tube put into your vein which connects to a drip containing the dye. Again, this helps to show up the inside of your body more clearly on the scan.

During the scan the bed moves in and out of the scanner. You may find it a bit noisy.

As the drip goes in you’ll probably get a metallic taste in your mouth, feel warm and you might think you are passing water, you’re not. These feelings pass quickly.

The radiographer controls the scan from a separate room. The CT machine takes pictures of your body from different angles and builds up a series of cross sections.

This creates a very detailed picture of the part of your body being scanned. Most scans take just a few minutes. The whole thing takes about 90 minutes and you usually get the results within a couple of weeks.

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Updated: 11 August 2016