CT scanning is a non-invasive imaging technology that uses a combination of rotating X-ray machines and computers to produce accurate, detailed images of the inside of your body. Used to diagnose a wide variety of conditions and injuries, it can help your doctor to decide what treatment is right for you, and later to see how well that treatment is working. A CT scanner is a large, donut-shaped ring that rotates around your body. During the scan, you will lie on your back on a bed that passes through the scanner, and the ring will rotate around a small section of your body as you pass through it. A CT scanner is operated by a radiographer and then the results will then be interpreted by your Radiologist, a doctor who will use the scans to help diagnose your condition. They might also be involved in building your treatment plan, but this depends on your individual circumstances.
Why might you need a CT scan?
A CT scan can be used to look at most areas of the body to help diagnose a massive range of injuries and conditions. It can also assess the extent or progress of a wide variety of symptoms and conditions. Your doctor might recommend you have a CT scan if you have symptoms of any of the following conditions, and they want to investigate further:
A mass in the abdomen
A soft tissue injury, for example a damaged ligament
There are several benefits of having a CT scan, including CT scans can provide images of both your bones and your soft tissues. Soft tissues connect and support your internal organs. They include your muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, and blood vessels. Detailed images of your soft tissues can help diagnose a range of conditions and injuries across your body. Both MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans and CT scans are painless and relatively fast procedures that produce detailed images of the inside of your body to diagnose a range of conditions. CT scanners do not surround your entire body at once but rotate around small parts of your body as you pass through it, so you shouldn’t feel claustrophobic or enclosed at any point. A CT scan can check for a variety of conditions, including tumours, abnormal bleeding, swelling, and head injuries. Because it is extensive and covers large areas of your body at once, a CT scan is more likely than other testing methods to detect underlying issues in their early stages across your body. This can help you find the right treatment quickly and efficiently.
How to book a CT scan
Before having a CT scan with us, you will need to have a consultation with one of our specialist consultants or your GP, who can confirm whether a CT scan is the right next step for you. We welcome referrals from your GP and private Consultants. Your consultant will know exactly how quickly you need to have a CT scan.
Preparing for a private CT scan
Before your scan, your Radiographer will explain the process in detail so that you know what to expect. You are not alone throughout the process of having a CT scan, and you can stop the scan at any point, should you wish. Y
Depending on why you are having a CT scan, you might be advised to avoid food or drink for up to four hours before the scan.
ou will be asked to change into a hospital gown and place your items in a locker before the scan is performed.
Preparing for dye injections
Some scans involve an injection of contrast dye into your arm to make certain soft tissues and blood vessels show up clearly in the images. During this part of the process, a cannula (a thin plastic tube) will be inserted into a vein in your arm, which will inject contrast dye during the scan. This should not be painful and does not take long to insert. The cannula will be removed after your scan. A CT scan is a painless procedure. We will ask you to fill out a safety questionnaire ahead of your appointment so that your Radiographer and Radiologist have a good understanding of your general health and medical history.
A CT scan is usually carried out as an outpatient procedure, which means you won't need to stay in hospital overnight. After the scan, you can return home and begin your normal activities immediately after.