By: Radiology  06-Dec-2011

CT Scanning                                                         

CT Scanning – What is it?

A CT scan is an advanced imaging technique which uses x-rays to produce detailed cross-sectional pictures of the body. CT shows us the internal organs much better than standard x-rays and is a very common and important examination technique in modern medicine.

Your Scan

Having a scan will be quite simple for you. You will lie down on a bed and the pictures will be taken as the bed passes through the large doughnut shaped scanner. Producing the scan pictures is complex, and there are several very powerful computers built into the machine.

Our radiologists, who are doctors specially trained to interpret your x-rays, will read the films and issue a report for you and your doctor.

Please come to your appointment dressed in comfortable casual clothing. For some examinations you will be asked to change into a gown. It may be necessary to remove metallic objects such as jewellery, dentures, hearing aids etc.

Your radiographer, specially trained in the use of x-ray equipment, will position you on the bed. The radiographer will operate the CT scanner from an adjoining room but is in contact with you via an intercom and, when out of the scanning room, will be observing you the whole time through a large window.

The scanning couch will move during the scan and you will be asked to remain very still during the scanning process.

The CT scan usually takes 20-40 minutes to complete.

Some patients will need an injection of a colourless fluid contrast agent to improve definition of some areas of the body.

This injection is given into a vein in the arm and is like most other intravenous injections except that you may feel a warm sensation afterwards lasting about two minutes. This is not painful, however, some patients find it uncomfortable because it is an unfamiliar sensation.

Your Results

After the scan is completed you will be able to return to your normal activities.

The radiologist will review your scans and send your films and report to your doctor. The radiologist may also phone your doctor to discuss the findings.


To make an appointment for your CT scan please phone our practice at Mercy Hospital in Epsom: 09 630 3324 or 09 623 5857.

If you have any further questions about CT scanning, ask your doctor or contact us direct.

Our staff will be pleased to help you.

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