A CT scan can be performed of any part of the body that your doctor needs to see to order to help diagnose a problem, to better define a known problem, or to monitor for changes.
If we are looking at the soft tissues of the neck (your muscles, ligaments, tendons and glands and lymph nodes) rather than the bones, it is usually recommended that you have an injection of IV contrast.
You will lie on your back with your head resting in a small headrest. Your head and neck will pass through the scanner.
Before your Scan
Before the scan, you may be asked to change into an examination gown for your comfort, and to ensure clothing does not affect the images and diagnostic quality of the scan. You may also be asked to remove jewellery, eye-glasses and any metal objects that might interfere with the images.
Risks / Side effects
As part of the CT, you may need to have an injection of a IV contrast . This medication is administered intravenously (injection into vein) through a needle. When the injection goes in you may have a warm feeling in the face, neck or pelvis. This usually lasts for a brief period then disappears. These feelings are normal and not an allergic reaction.
Occasionally (<1%), mild allergic reactions such as a rash, hives or sneezing can occur. These usually develop at the time of scanning, do not require treatment and settle rapidly. Sometimes a mild reaction such as a skin rash may occur from 1 hour to 1 week after injection.
Less commonly (<1 in 100,000 patients), more severe reactions can occur including asthma or shock. Severe, life threatening reactions up to and including death have occurred but are extremely rare. In the event of a reaction, we have equipment and trained staff available to begin immediate treatment.
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