Not everyone wants to have a CT scan. It is painless, but it could be scary for some. The idea of being inside this huge device while alone is something that scares a lot of people. However, a CT scan is important. Your doctor will give you the right diagnosis after checking the results of the CT scan. Your doctor will also know if it is appropriate to have surgery. If yes, the specific areas to be operated on can also be easily detected with the help of the results. Given its importance, you have no choice but to just prepare yourself for the CT scan.
To begin with, you need to remove any metal from your body. You are not allowed to wear jewellery or hair accessories. Clothes with metal zips should also be avoided. They could affect the results.
Apart from what you are wearing, you will also be asked to not eat or drink anything before undergoing a CT scan. You should have an empty stomach for at least a few hours before the scan. Certain medicines are also to be avoided before the procedure.
There are different areas of the body that should be scanned. There are also different preparations needed for each part. For the scan of the abdomen or pelvis, you might be asked to drink something so that the stomach and bowel will show up in the results. The doctor can clearly see the images. In pelvic scans as well, a fluid might be placed into your body via the rectum.
There are also cases in which a dye is injected into the bloodstream. This serves as a contrast agent. Even if it is inserted through the vein, you will still have an odd taste in your mouth.
Actual CT scan
During the actual scan, you will be asked to stay still. Avoid moving as it could interfere with the results. The scan does not take too long. It is somewhere between 5 to 30 minutes. It depends on which area of the body is being scanned. If you use more modern equipment such as that used in private CT scans in London, the process can even be over in a short period of time.
Although the process is painless, it is still scary, and some people might request a companion. Since X-rays are also used in the same room, there is quite a high level of radiation. Therefore, companions are not allowed. You can still talk to them via a monitor.
Once the scan is over, you can go back to your regular activities. Wait for the results and their interpretation. The next step will depend on the results. Just hope for the best after the CT scan so you will soon get better.