CT Scans Explained - 3Dicom Viewer

CT Scans Explained

If you have ever gone to the doctor for something serious, like a physical injury, they might sometimes recommend having a CT scan. If you are worried about what CT scan is, we have compiled a guide to let you know everything about the functions of CT scan:

Everything you need to know about a CT scan:

What is a CT scan?

As the name suggests, a CT scan or Computerised Tomography scan is an examination of the human body. Through the use of complex machinery and rotating X-ray machines, a CT scan makes images of the body. These images help doctors peer inside your body without actually opening it up.

How does a CT scan work?

CT scans work on the concept of X-rays. The patient lies on a bed that slowly moves into an X-ray tube that rotates around the bed. During the rotation, the X-ray machine takes continuous photos of the patient. 

History of CT scans:

CT scan originally came into existence in 1972 as a collaboration between Godfrey Hounsfield who was from EMI Laboratories in England. He worked with Allan Cormack who was from Tufts University. 

The first CT scanners were installed between 1974-1976 and used for head scanning and would take hours to acquire raw data and days to process a single image. Eventually, full-body CT scanners have been developed that take no more than a few hours to fully process a single image. 

Main Use Scenarios:

Here are some of the scenarios that CT scans are usually used in:

  • Detection of problems in bone and joints like fractures and tumours. 
  • Figuring out the progress of tumours of cancers and heart diseases. 
  • Help find spots of internal injuries and bleeding.
  • Checking if the body can handle surgeries and certain therapies.

The differences compared to X-Ray:

As compared to generic X-rays that use films to process data, CT scanners use special X-ray detectors. X-rays can only take images of the bone structure and help find bone fractures and dislocations as well as cancer. CT scanners provide all that, as well as organ injuries and much more – all in 360 degrees. 

How are CT scanners stored?

CT scanners are usually very large and require a complete room to be stored in. The room is supposed to be sterilised to ensure that no extra bacteria or particles get in the way of the scans. When taking care of, CT scanners are not to be fully sterilised or disinfected because it can hamper the proper working of the machine. 

Why is a CT scan in black & white?

CT scans are not in black and white, they also have different shades of grey. Every doctor is used to the shades of black and white. The brain can easily misinterpret colours. This helps them diagnose issues with the internal organs easily. Another reason is that there will be too much noise in the images if they went with black and white with the current technology. 

Radiation in CT scan:

The dose of radiation in a CT scan is measured in millisievert (mSv). In general, the average CT scan gives the body about 1 to 10 mSv of radiation. A chest CT scan is about 1.5 mSv on a low-dose and about 7 mSv on a regular dose. 

Final Thoughts:

We hope that this article was able to help you understand everything there is about CT scans. If you still have any queries, you can always contact us and we will promptly help you.