CT and PET/CT Scan
Computed tomography, more commonly known as a CT scan, is a diagnostic exam that produces multiple images of the inside of the body. CT scans are often used to diagnose cancer, cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, appendicitis, trauma and musculoskeletal disorders. CT images of internal organs, bones, soft tissue and blood vessels typically provide greater detail than traditional X-rays.
How does CT differ from MRI?
MRI uses a strong magnet and radio waves to create high-resolution images, while CT uses X-rays. MRI and CT images provide slightly different information to doctors. Your doctor may order one or both of these tests for you.
Positron emission tomography (PET) and computerized tomography (CT) are both state-of-the-art imaging tools. A PET scan looks at biologic activity, such as how your cells are utilizing nutrients like sugar and oxygen. A CT scan provides a detailed picture of the body’s internal anatomy and can detect abnormal growths, injuries, and changes in the size or structure of internal organs. The PET/CT exam combines the strengths of these two well-established imaging technologies into a single scan, showing the body’s biologic activity and the anatomic structure.
PET/CT scans are commonly used to:
- Detect cancer
- Detect Alzheimer’s disease or other neurological conditions
- Assess myocardial viability
Benefits of a PET/CT Scan
A PET scan detects changes in cellular function. Since these changes take place before physical changes occur, a PET/CT exam can help physicians make an earlier diagnosis, which means a quicker path to treatment.
Because the PET and CT images are acquired nearly simultaneously, the exam can take less time than having separate imaging procedures, and the results are more precise.
Computed Tomography (CT)
A series of x-rays taken from different angles around the body to create cross-sectional images
Low-Dose Lung CT
A low dose of X-rays used for the early detection of lung cancer
Positron Emission Tomography (PET)
Uses radioactive material to show how well organs and tissues are functioning