What is CT Scanning of the Chest?
CT Scanning is a noninvasive, painless medical test that helps physicians diagnose and treat medical conditions.
CT scans of lungs provide greater clarity than conventional X-ray exams.
What are some common uses of the procedure?
CT of the Chest is used to:
- Further examine abnormalities found on conventional Chest X-rays
- Help diagnose clinical signs or symptoms of disease of the chest
- Detect and evaluate the extent of tumors that arise in the lung and mediastinum, or tumors that have spread there from other parts of the body
A chest CT scan can also be used to screen for lung cancer in former or current cigarette smokers who are at much greater risk of cancer than nonsmokers. CT is able to detect even very small abnormalities that could be early lung cancer and are not be visible on a conventional Chest X-ray.
How should I prepare for the CT scan?
You should wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing to your exam.
You may be given a gown to wear during the procedure.
Metal objects including jewelry, eyeglasses, dentures and hairpins may affect the CT images and should be left at home or removed prior to your exam. You may also be asked to remove hearing aids and removable dental work.
You may be asked not to eat or drink anything for several hours beforehand, especially if a contrast material will be used in your exam. You should inform your physician of any medications you are taking and if you have any allergies, especially to contrast materials.
Also inform your doctor of any recent illnesses or other medical conditions, and if you have a history of heart disease, asthma, diabetes, kidney disease or thyroid problems. Any of these conditions may increase the risk of an unusual adverse effect.
Women should always inform their physician or technologist if there is any possibility that they are pregnant.