What is head CT scanner?
Ct scanner or computerized tomography is a modern, non-invasive diagnostic method, which is characterized by the use of X-rays and modern technology in order to obtain the clearest possible images of different parts of the body.
Unlike an ordinary X-ray machine, a CT scanner creates images in multiple layers, so it is more accurate and reliable. This way of working involves a greater exposure to radiation than with ordinary X-ray imaging, but the risk is small compared to the benefit that diagnostics brings.
X-ray, as an older method, simply has certain limitations, so it cannot always provide the same data as a CT or MSCT scanner.
CT scan of the head includes imaging of facial bones, brain and meninges, imaging of sinuses, ear, eye sockets and facial bones.
When is a head scan required?
Imaging the head with a CT scanner can be recommended when it is necessary to determine the places of skull fractures, but it is not always necessary in that case, because there are other ways to gain insight into the condition of the bones of the skull in such a situation.
On the other hand, it is extremely applicable and important for accurate determination:
- existence of bleeding and bleeding site
- whether there is a blood clot
- is it a stroke
- whether there is a tumor or if the previous tumor has spread
- whether therapy for the treatment of malignancy gives results
- whether there is any disease or malformation of the skull
- in order to confirm suspicions of hydrocephalus (enlargement of the brain cavity)
For which symptoms is head CT recommended?
It is difficult to give a comprehensive answer to this question. The patient cannot go for a head scan on his own initiative, but based on the anamnesis and other results, he is sent by an oncologist, neurologist, neuropsychiatrist or neurosurgeon, depending on the nature of the patient’s problem, the course of the disease, the type of disease, and his condition.
However, some of the symptoms that patients referred for head CT can have are:
- constant, severe headaches
- loss of consciousness
- epileptic attack
- facial paralysis
- facial swelling
- balance disorder
What does a head CT scann look like?
The CT machine resembles a shallow tube into which the bed on which the patient lies is inserted. The bed is adjusted to the appropriate position inside the machine, so that it is possible for the CT to image the desired parts of the body. With this device, it is possible to record the entire body, although most often patients need a recording of one or two segments, that is, one or two organs.
At Pulse Cardiology Center, we use a 128 multislice Incisive CT Philps scanner, the latest generation and extremely precise.
It is important that the person is dressed comfortably for the recording, and in some situations the clinic will provide a hospital gown.
The machine is located in the computerized tomography room in a separate room, and the person trained to work on the scanner is in another room that is separated by glass, but is in constant contact via speakerphone with the person being recorded.
It is important for the patient to say if he feels any discomfort, so that it can be removed.
It may happen that the patient is frightened by the sound of the machine, but its occurrence is normal. In addition, some people feel claustrophobic when doing a head scanner, and in those situations you should talk to the expert conducting the scan. It is very important to us that the patient feels as comfortable and relaxed as possible, because that way the recordings will be better and clearer.
You should approach this procedure without fear because you will not feel pain while it lasts, nor will you experience any discomfort.
When you lie down on the bed and find yourself in the right position for the imaging, an X-ray machine will be rotated around your head and will take many images of all parts of the head, based on which you will then receive a diagnosis and treatment instructions.
Is contrast needed for a head scan?
It may be necessary to use a contrast agent when taking a head scan, it all depends on what the end goal of the scan is. The drug is given to the patient in order to better see some parts that are otherwise hard to see.
How to prepare for head CT?
As we have already mentioned, you should come to the head scan dressed comfortably, because you will be lying on the bed for some time and you should feel comfortable. Sometimes the patient has to wear a hospital gown.
Before the head CT scan, you should not eat or drink for several hours if contrast material will be used.
The contrast contains iodine, so it is important for the patient to point out if he is allergic to it. If you have ever eaten cashews, be sure that you are not allergic to the contrast. This still does not mean that if you have an allergy, the imaging cannot be performed, but a consultation with an allergist may be necessary. Often people’s reaction to iodine, even if it happens, is not sudden, but in the form of a short-term rash or redness. After imaging, it is necessary to drink as much liquid as possible in order to eliminate the contrast medium from the body as soon as possible.
If you have any disease, especially kidney disease, it should be noted. Before the imaging, the Pulse cardiology center also performs a urea and creatinine analysis, if contrast will be used, and in this way it will be possible to gain insight into whether you are a candidate for a head scanner.
You should come to the recording without metal, jewelry, prostheses, earrings, piercings because they can interfere with the camera.
If you need a CT scan of the head, it is of course important that you know all the costs of high-quality imaging. The price of a head CT scanner is 10,500 dinars or 13,500 dinars if a contrast medium is used. Our staff, who you can call on 0117555000, will give you all the answers and clarify any doubts you may have.
Are head CT scans safe?
Some patients have various fears when they are referred for this type of head imaging. One of them is caused by the fact that this technology involves the use of X-rays, which are certainly not harmless, but we must emphasize that the length of exposure to those rays is extremely important, and it is the length of exposure that affects the potential consequences.
A CT machine uses X-rays that are stronger than a standard X-ray. However, rest assured that this amount will be the minimum needed to get good shots. The recording will last about fifteen minutes and it belongs to the diagnostic methods that will never be recommended without a good reason.
Therefore, we will evaluate based on your condition and previous analyzes whether it is necessary or possible to get an answer using an even safer method.
If you are pregnant, a different type of imaging may be recommended.
What should I expect after the CT imaging?
After the imaging, you should drink as much liquid as possible so that the contrast medium is eliminated as soon as possible and you can immediately return to your regular activities.
You will receive the results immediately from our radiologist, who will try to explain to you as best as possible what conclusions he reached.
Diseases related to the bones of the head, brain, eyes and ears can be really dangerous. Very often, this will not be the only analysis that will be recommended to the patient, but it will provide valuable information about the condition or the direction in which further tests should be carried out. It is sometimes impossible to get a completely clear picture of the state of that part of the body without this type of imaging, although it entails a certain risk due to radiation. Further therapy and treatment will largely depend on the results obtained in this way.
There are situations, such as when bleeding or a stroke are suspected, when there is no time to wait and when it is necessary to access the scan immediately. Then it plays an important role in saving the life of a vulnerable person.
If you had doubts or fears related to this method, we hope that you have seen its important role in establishing the right diagnosis. Pulse Cardiology Center is the place where you can get the best and fastest treatment, that’s why we should be your choice.