Computed tomography of the lungs — what shows CT scan?


Lungs are the most frequent on the subject using the methods of radiation diagnosis. The role of x-rays in studying the structure and pathology of the lung is confirmed by the fact that the classification of such diseases as tuberculosis, tumors, sarcoidosis, occupational lung disease are largely based on x-ray data. Radiologic diagnosis to this day, it has an important advantage over other methods of research. In addition, each patient knows what to detect latent pulmonary diseases, in our country the population EN masse are doing chest x-rays. With the advent and development of CT, the value of the x-ray method increased. Computed tomography of the lung and bronchus are better than others research shows early changes in these organs.

Indications for chest x-ray is very diverse: high temperature, cough, sputum, shortness of breath, chest pain, hemoptysis, and other signs suggestive of disease of the lungs and bronchi.

A more valuable method of research of organs of a thorax, in comparison with linear and computer tomography. The doctor chooses the so-called «window width» depending on the purpose of the study. Thus, it is possible to focus on the study of the structure of the lungs, arteries and veins of the chest cavity or the mediastinum.

From the point of view of diagnostic accuracy much better than multidetector CT, which you can use to take pictures of the tissues in multiple sections. She increased the speed of examination and reduced dose x-ray irradiation by 65%. MSCT is sick in a serious condition, contact with which is difficult, is the method of choice when conducting artificial lung ventilation and, if necessary, continuous monitoring of cardiac activity. With MSCT it is possible to build two-dimensional and three-dimensional images of the lungs, bronchi and other organs of the chest. Spiral imaging light only lasts 15 seconds with a single breath hold.

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CT allows to explore the structure and function of pulmonary arteries and veins. Using CT of the thorax can be used to visualize the pulmonary trunk, its right and left branches and to determine their relationship with the ascending aorta, upper Vena cava and main stem bronchi, to detect signs of filling defects of the arteries and veins in pulmonary embolism.

CT with contrast shows better localization of the pathological formation, its borders, the state of the lymphatic system in the study area, the nature of the tissues, the condition of pulmonary arteries and veins. Modern research on the CT scan is usually not performed without contrast enhancement. CT with contrast is not available to patients if they have allergies to iodine-containing medications and products for patients with diabetes mellitus, people with serious kidney, liver and cardiovascular failure.

CT scan – risk or health benefits?

Patients are often interested in how harmful a particular study. Because no one wants to cure one disease to another. In the CT scanners use x-ray radiation, so there is a risk of ionizing radiation. Computed tomography of the lungs and bronchi is not performed as a search method to pregnant women and children up to 14 years. This is due to the fact that the x-ray radiation, may cause harmful impact on the emerging system of the fetus and growing child. If you can use the more secure method, then it is preferred computed tomography. In other cases, the decision about whether to conduct a CT scan takes doctor.

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The radiation dose during CT of the thorax a little more than conventional x-ray studies and is equivalent to the amount of natural radiation that a person receives for three years, so that too often such imaging is not indicated. However, CT may detect more severe disease than the effects that it can cause.

In each individual case the preference is given to more informative and less harmful methods of diagnosis, but in situations where no CT not enough – should do it.

How to prepare for a study on the CT scan?

Special preparation before CT of the lungs and thorax is not needed. In situations when the indicated CT with contrast, your doctor may ask you not to eat anything two hours before the study. Computed tomography has no effect on the human condition, and after examination it is possible to drive or do daily chores.

Lung diseases lead to serious consequences: for an ordinary cough can hide tuberculosis, and for high temperatures of lung cancer. To prevent disease is easier than to treat it, and methods such as linear and multislice computed tomography helps to detect the disease in its earliest stages, when cure is possible without consequences for health and life.