Computed tomography of the neck and cervical spine

One of the reliable methods of diagnosis is CT scan of the neck. Usually it is used by surgeons and oncologists, but prescribe and other doctors.

Indications for CT of the neck

The study is the use of x-rays. Rays properly directed to your area of study. A layerwise scanning of its tissues. The resulting images anatomy of the neck is visible with all the details.

Indications and contraindications

Computed tomography is a unique technique of research. It helps to detect pathology of the neck: vessels, bones, spinal canal and even the lymph nodes.

The Indications for imaging are as follows:

degenerative disc disease – indications for CT of the neck

  • neck injury, particularly severe cases;
  • suspected benign and malignant tumors (in the case of malignancy, the study shows possible metastases and their growth)
  • clarify the localization of foreign bodies located in the study area;
  • the need to assess blood flow and determine whether the brain is provided with meals;
  • definition of inflammation, including abscesses, infiltrates, and others;
  • diagnose cervical diverticulum;
  • diseases of the lymphatic system, including for the purpose of monitoring of treatment;
  • suspected degenerative disc disease (in this case there will be a CT scan of the cervical spine);
  • a sprain of the spine and intervertebral hernia in the neck;
  • detection of vascular pathologies.

A CT scan of the neck can be carried out not always. When imaging using x-rays. Direction of the rays when x-rays and tomography is different. And, although the radiation dose in CT is lower than with x-rays, nevertheless, performing such a study is not recommended:

pregnancy is a contraindication for CT

  • pregnant women at any time;
  • nursing
  • children 14 years of age (permitted only in extreme cases)
  • very complete patients with body weight more than 120 kg
  • patients with diabetes mellitus last stage;
  • patients who have metal prosthesis in his mouth;
  • a person in a coma
  • for patients with diseases of the mind.

CT contrast agent, the patient should not be allergic to the contrast.

How research is conducted?

Computed tomography of the neck requires some preparation. If the scheduled scans with contrast, patient must not eat before the test. Last time you can eat no later than 8 hours before CT. To drink any liquid, even water, is also impossible.

Advice of the attending physician

Before the procedure, you must remove all metal objects.

I Must remember to take the referral from the doctor, who prescribed a CT scan.

during the session the patient should follow all instructions of your doctor. For scanning, the patient lies on the scanner table. His head should be sent to the main part of the equipment. If the doctor finds it necessary, the patient's head will lock. This will prevent the patient moving procedure requires immobility.

If you need a contrast injection, it is injected into a vein of the patient at this moment.

The Table with the patient moves in the unit itself, where it is scanning. In this case the patient does not feel any discomfort, the more pain.

Contrast agent for CT

The timing of the research depends on the aim pursued – CT can last just a few seconds and may take as long as 15 minutes.

Once the procedure ends, the patient is asked to wait 15 minutes, during which time the doctor prints those images that are necessary for the transfer specialist. At the same time is done and medical report about the condition of the organs of the patient. With the results the patient returns to her physician that puts an accurate diagnosis and prescribes treatment.

A special attention deserves the use of a contrast agent. It is used quite often. The drug is created from ordinary iodine. In the organism it is administered intravenously, but sometimes orally. It is tomography with contrast has a lot of contraindications. One of them are diseased kidneys. This is because the contrast agent should be quickly excreted from the body. But if the kidneys do not work properly, the contrast remains in the body, becoming toxic.

Computed tomography of the neck

The Contrast material, once the body has a number of side effects that begin to appear on the first day.It's a pain in the head, nausea, metallic taste in the mouth, the raising or lowering of the pressure.

Modern methods of diagnosis

The Constant development allow scientists to equip medical institutions all more advanced equipmentfor diagnosis. And among the methods of CT has these too – for example, spiral imaging.

There is Often a situation when you need urgent research. In this case, and comes to the aid of spiral computed tomography. She explores any part of the body and processes occurring in them.

Multislice computed tomography

In the traditional method, such as tomography of the cervical spine, the scanning is performed incrementally. Spiral CT takes the entire area at the same time. This is achieved due to the fact that the x-ray tube is moving without interruption by a spiral path. The study period is much reduced.

due to reduced time spent on the session, significantly reduced radiation load on the body. At the same time you can explore several areas of the body.

Another new method – MSCT (multislice computed tomography).

Is Assigned to this type of examination of patients with injuries or severe illnesses, very when every minute counts.

In Just a few seconds, the scanner manages to make a large number of images. The patient must only hold your breath for those few seconds.

After all of MSCT images reconstructed object in 3D view. It helps physicians to assess the situation and prescribe the correct treatment.

When using MSCT of the neck can be diagnosed tumor. The results of this study invaluable in diseases of the lymph nodes.