Available at our Edmondson Park clinic

What is a CT scan?

CT or Computed Tomography, uses X-rays to produce detailed three-dimensional images of any part of the body. Unlike X-rays, several images are obtained, generally in a circumferential fashion. A computer algorithm then assesses the images, performs calculations and produces the so-called CT scan.

What happens during my CT scan?

You will be asked to lie on a table, which will move in and out of the donut-shaped scanner while the images are being taken. You may hear a soft “whooshing” sound as the x-ray camera spins around the scanner, but it is not loud. You may be asked to hold your breath a few times for about 5 seconds.

Certain scans require an injection of IV contrast, also known as the “X-ray dye”. This is a Iodine-based liquid that is injected through a small needle in a vein and improves our ability to make an accurate diagnosis. Most patients experience a hot flush for about one minute while the dye is being injected, but this soon passes.

Most CT scans only take a few minutes. Occasionally you may be asked to drink an oral contrast solution. This improves visibility of your gut structures.

What are the risks vs benefits of having a CT scan?

Your doctor may prefer a CT scan over other modalities such as X-ray or Ultrasound because the image detail is much higher, which allows for a more detailed diagnosis.

The radiation levels for CT scans, while still relatively low, are higher than X-ray levels and therefore carries slightly more risk. There is no conclusive evidence that the radiation levels used in a single CT scan cause long term health issues, however we always try to limit the amount of radiation a patient receives.

In most cases, the benefits of having a CT scan (such as your doctor making an accurate diagnosis) greatly outweigh any potential risks.

If you are pregnant, or think you may be pregnant, it is essential that you let our staff know before you have your scan.

Preparation for a CT scan

Scans that need IV contrast require you to keep well hydrated and eat nothing for 2 hours before your appointment. We may also require recent blood test results to check your kidney function. If you are a diabetic or have a history of kidney disease, please let the receptionist know at the time of booking.

Scans that do not require IV contrast generally have no specific preparation.​

Our booking personnel will inform you of the appropriate preparation at the time of booking.

Our machine

CareScan Edmonson Park is equipped with the latest model state of the art low-dose CT scanner available on the market. Our CT scanner is very comfortable for patients of all ages and sizes and can scan your entire body in a single breath-hold.

You can read more about our scanner here:

Radiation safety

Radiation safety is one of our top priorities. We are highly committed to producing the best possible images at the lowest possible radiation dose. All our scanners are equipped with the latest dose reduction features, which reduces radiation dose by up to 70% compared to similar scanners without these features. Our radiation doses are well below the recommended levels set by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA).

The radiation doses imparted to children by our scanners is lower than the accepted standards, and that of our competitors.

You or your child will be provided lead shielding during the examinations to cover vital organs that are sensitive to radiation. Most imaging practices do not go to this length to protect their patients from the harmful effects of radiation.