Preparation will vary depending on the area being examined.
The duration of an examination depends on which part of the body is being examined. If you are asthmatic or diabetic it is very important that you inform reception staff. You may need to change into a gown and you will be asked to lie on a narrow bed. The bed is designed to slide through a large 'O' shaped x-ray tube. Depending on the specific examination you will be oriented to pass either head first or feet first through the tube. A radiographer controls the scanner from behind a partition near the scanner. The table will move during the examination as images are obtained. You might be given breathing instructions during the scan - these are recorded on the machine and played back to you when necessary.
If you receive a contrast injection you may feel a slight warmth and metallic taste.
During a CT scan, the objective is that your child is exposed to the smallest amount of radiation necessary to make a diagnosis. The Australian Government through the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) and the health professionals who refer and deliver medical imaging promote the following strategies for minimising radiation exposure in children:
Most scans take 20 minutes.