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What is Computed Tomography (CT)?

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aquilon.jpgCT (computed tomography), sometimes called CAT scan, uses special x-ray equipment to obtain image data from different angles around the body, and then uses computer processing of the information to show a cross-section of body tissues and organs. The Toshiba Aquilion MS16, the most advanced equipment in Western New York, is used by this facility to create cross-sectional images of your body. CT imaging is particularly useful because it can show several types of tissue—lung, bone, soft tissue, and blood vessels—with great clarity. Using specialized equipment and expertise to create and interpret CT scans of the body, radiologists can more easily diagnose problems such as cancers, cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, trauma, and musculoskeletal disorders. CT of the body is a patient-friendly exam that involves little radiation exposure.

Common Uses of CT Scanning

Because it provides detailed, cross-sectional views of all types of tissue, CT is one of the best tools for studying the chest and abdomen. It is often the preferred method for diagnosing many different cancers, including lung, liver, and pancreatic cancer, since the image allows a physician to confirm the presence of a tumor and to measure its size, precise location, and the extent of the tumor's involvement with other nearby tissue. CT examinations are often used to plan and properly administer radiation treatments for tumors, to guide biopsies and other minimally invasive procedures, and to plan surgery and determine surgical respectability. CT can clearly show even very small bones, as well as surrounding tissues such as muscle and blood vessels. This makes it invaluable in diagnosing and treating spinal problems and injuries to the hands, feet, and other skeletal structures.

In cases of trauma, CT can quickly identify injuries to the liver, spleen, kidneys, or other internal organs. CT can also play a significant role in the detection, diagnosis, and treatment of vascular diseases that can lead to stroke, kidney failure, or even death.

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