CT Scan

Computed Tomography Scan

A CT scan is a non-invasive test that helps doctors diagnose and treat a variety of medical conditions. A CT takes multiple detailed pictures (“slices”) of the inside of the body using a sophisticated x-ray machine and transfers those images to a computer. The computer then arranges the images so they can be viewed from different directions and angles, as well as rotated in a three dimensional model (3D). To obtain the CT scan, the patient lies down on a table that is programmed to slowly slide through a donut-shaped machine. The procedure is painless, but you will hear clicking and whirring sounds as the machine rotates around you.

In some exams, a dye or contrast material is used because it makes the blood vessels or organs easier to see in the pictures. The dye may be injected or swallowed, depending on the type of scan.

Insist on the Low-Dose Option

There are long term radiation exposure risks from CT that can be substantially diminished by the low dose CT technology now available at Salem Radiology Consultants.  SRC’s state of the art scanner is the only CT machine in the mid Willamette Valley using this new and improved technology.

A literal “head to head” comparison study of CT radiation doses among local medical imaging facilities clearly demonstrates SRC has the highest quality and lowest CT radiation in the region.

Salem Radiology is the only facility offering ultra-low dose ASiR technology, which significantly reduces radiation exposure to patients.

How to prepare:

If you are having a CT scan without contrast materials, no preparation is necessary. If your CT involves the injection of contrast material, an intravenous (IV) line will be gently inserted into your arm prior to your scan. You will be more comfortable wearing loose-fitting clothes that contain no metal such as zippers or snaps. For your convenience, Salem Radiology offers medical scrubs and gowns that you can change into in one of our dressing rooms. You may need to remove any body piercings, barrettes, jewelry, glasses, or other items, depending on what part of your body is being scanned. Please note, patients must weigh less than 500 pounds due to the table load limit.

Length of Exam:

Depending on the mobility of the patient, it can take approximately 2-5 minutes to position a person on the scan table prior to his or her scan. CT scans are a very quick technology, typically requiring less than 20 seconds of actual scan time to scan from the head through the toes. Scans that are performed with contrast will require two passes across the body.

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