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CAT Scans
Health Guide
What is a CAT(CT) Scan?
Computerised tomographic scanning, or CT scaning (sometimes called CAT scanning - Computer Aided Tomography) uses x-rays to image a section of the body, organ or tissue. It works by having a range of xray detectors arranged in arc surrounding the patient. This allows the x-ray source to move around the patient and provides the doctors with a 3D view of the organ - the computer allows doctors to view "slices" of the body. The doctor can then have a better understanding of the problem affecting the patient.


Why Use CT Scans?
CT scanning allows for far better resolution of images and can detect tiny tumours only a milimeter or two across. The disavantages of CT scanning is the use of radiation, which if used repeatedly, can damage cells. However, modern CT units use only small amounts of radiation as the x-ray detectors used are extremely sensitive and can form an accurate image from very little radiation.

MRI scanning allows imaging without the use of radiation and increasingly this form of medical imaging is currently gaining favour.

See also

X-rays

MRI scans

PET scans

Ultrasounds



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