Computed Tomography (CT) Scan of the Head and Face
What To Think About
- Sometimes your CT test results may be different than those from other types of X-ray tests, Reference magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) Opens New Window, or Reference ultrasound Opens New Window scans because the CT scan provides a different view.
- Children who need a CT scan may need special instructions for the test. If the child is too young to hold still or is afraid, the doctor may give the child a medicine (Reference sedative Opens New Window) to help him or her relax.
- If your child is scheduled for a CT scan, talk with your child's doctor about the need for the scan and the risk of radiation exposure to your child.
CT scanners called spiral (helical) CT scanners and multi-slice (or
multi-detector) CT scanners are sometimes used for this test. They can find
Reference aneurysms Opens New Window or
Reference atherosclerosis Opens New Window. These special CT scanners can:
- Take better pictures of blood vessels and organs.
- Produce scans in less time.
- Perfusion CT is a method to look at blood flow in the brain. For this test, a dye (Reference contrast material Opens New Window) is given intravenously (Reference IV Opens New Window), and CT scans then follow the flow of the dye through the brain. This type of CT scan can show damaged areas of the brain. The scans also can show areas of the brain that are not getting any blood flow.
- CT results are often compared to positron emission tomography (PET) results to help find cancer. Some new scanners do both scans at the same time.
- A Reference CT angiogram Opens New Window can show two- and three-dimensional pictures of blood vessels. For more information, see the topic Reference Angiogram of the Head and Neck.
- MRI may give additional information after a CT scan of the head and face is done. For more information, see the topic Reference Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference September 21, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Howard Schaff, MD - Diagnostic Radiology