Computed tomography commonly known as a CT or CAT scan, is a diagnostic medical test in radiology that uses traditional X-rays and captures multiple structural images of the organs inside the body. The cross-sectional images generated during a CT scan are captured in slices and can be formatted in multiple planes. They can even generate a three-dimensional image. These images can be viewed on a computer monitor for analyzing results and drawing conclusions over a diagnosis.
CT scan is an advanced tool and provides accurate results compared to that of an X-ray. CT Scans help diagnose various diseases pertaining to heart, lungs, liver and many more capturing images of bones, soft tissues and blood vessels providing greater details.
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Types of CT Scanners
The first commercial CT scanner was invented by Sir Godfrey Hounsfield in Hayes using X-rays. The first scan was a brain-scan performed on 1 October 1971. It was publicly announced in 1972.
There are two types of CT scans, one is Conventional CT and other is Helical or Spiral CT Scan. In Conventional scan, the scan stops after each capture and moves down from the top. This is a slow process. The Spiral Scan is the most used type of scan. The scanner unlike the conventional method, keeps taking images continuously, thus making it faster. The CT scan machine divides the body up into “slices” and captures the images which are then reformatted using a computer.
Single slice CT scanners are capable of capturing one image per rotational session. The configuration of the CT scan machines comes in 4, 6, 8, 16, 32, 40, and 64 slices. Scanners with more slices are faster and more accurate. The high end configurations available in market are 128 and 256 Slices. These additional slices improve the diagnostic ability and expand the range of applications, especially during cardiovascular studies.
- 2, 4, 6 or 8-slice CT Scanners – these are all whole-body scanners and capable of scanning through 360-degree rotation and acquiring multiple slices in a single rotation. These models are great where patient’s inflow is not too high and provide medium to fast scanning with excellent image quality.
- 16-slice CT Scanners – 16-slice systems can perform a wide variety of complex imaging procedures. It provides coverage of full organs with high resolution, but is not considered adequate for detailed cardiac analysis. 16 slice CT scans are quite popular as compared to other CT scan equipments.
- 32- 40 slice CT Scanners – These scanners generally take lesser time for examination than the 16-slice machine. They reduce risk of distractions due to movements of the patients.
- 64-slice CT Scanners – A 64-slice scanner is said be an improved version for CT Angiography (CTA) that is particularly recommended for cardiac studies. The sensitivity and speed of these machines allows the doctors to see how well the heart is contracting, detect plaque formation on the walls of arteries, and to observe the tiniest of vessels and arterial branches. These machines produce exceptionally sharp images and significantly reduce scan time.
CT Scan procedure
The machine is circular in shape with a sliding table on which the patient is required to lay down. Once the scanner starts, the circular shaped scanner, which consists of an X-ray generator, rotates around the object or a body part for diagnosis. At the other side of the circle, an X-ray detector is placed. The machine captures the raw images, called a sinogram. This raw data is not sufficient for drawing conclusions. They are then transferred to the computer for further tomographic reconstruction that produces a series of cross-sectional images. These images can be used to diagnose and detect a problem and can be printed as well. The test time may vary from 5 to 30 minutes depending upon the type of scan being done. You may need to follow few instructions before and after the scan. You may be asked to fast few hours before the CT scan. You may need to wear loose clothing or a hospital/center provided gown during the CT scan. Any metals are objected in the scan area, like jewellery, accessories or clips etc. Intimating the doctor if you are under any medications, or if you pregnant or allergic to certain materials is very important.
Some patients with claustrophobia or children would require a mild seductive to keep them still during the scan. Any movement may distort the images being captured leading to false interpretations. In some cases a contrast dye may be required to get better and accurate results. The contrast dye may be given through IV (veins) or may be given through rectum or oral. Using specialized equipment and expertise to create and interpret CT scans of the body, radiologists can easily diagnose problems such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, muscular or skeletal disorders, appendicitis and trauma.
Types of CT scan
CT scan is used in the diagnosis of aliments associated with Abdomen, Heart, lungs, liver and many more. The scan helps in locating appendicitis, blockage of ducts, gallstones, kidney stones, sinus, Tumours & Spread of Cancers as well. It also helps in detecting cysts, skull fractures, injuries, infections, defects in internal organs and density of bones. It has also been a great guide during biopsies and detection of the stage of cancer. Below are a few common CT scans that are advised:
- CT scan of Head – CT scanning of the head helps in the detection of infarction (tissue death due to inadequate blood supply), tumors, and stroke, Calcifications (accumulation of calcium salts in tissues), Haemorrhage (internal bleeding) and bone trauma. It also helps detect hearing problems and paranasal sinuses.
- CT Scan of Chest – If a patient is seen with symptoms like continuous cough, shortness of breath, severe fever or chest pain, he may be advised for a CT scan of the Chest. It is helpful in detecting the functioning of the lungs, heart, bones and blood vessels, muscles and tissues within the chest area. CT scan is helpful to an extent to detect the abnormalities that could be cancerous.
- CT Scan of Abdomen – CT abdomen scan helps in accurate diagnosis of abdominal diseases. It helps in diagnosing and staging of cancer, as well as follow ups after cancer treatment to assess response. Other than cancer it helps in diagnosis of inflated colon, appendicitis, abnormalities of liver, spleen, pancreas and kidneys. It is commonly used to investigate acute abdominal pain.
- CT Scan of Spine – CT scan of spine is usually advised to patients to detect spinal column damage during injuries. It is also performed to detect fractures, herniated disk problems, measurement of bone density in patients with osteoporosis and arthritis and scoliosis.
- CT Angiography or CTA scan – this is a very useful CT scan used to analyze the blood flow in the arteries all through the body including brain, lungs, kidneys, arms and legs. CT angiography is commonly used to treat pulmonary blockages and kidney related disorders. CTA is also used in treating disorders like dissection of aortas, malformation inside brain tissues and atherosclerotic disease. This scan is performed using contrast dye for better results and clear images.
Healthcare Diagnostics market of India and CT scan
Indians are visiting hospitals more often than before. The unexpected increase in the number of patients for diagnosis and treatment has become a challenge to the doctors as well as the diagnostic centers. According to the National Sample Survey Office’s (NSSO) about 41 out of every 1,000 people are hospitalized every year. There is a mix of healthcare delivery system in India, the public and the private healthcare providers. The rapid urbanization has led to more number of people preferring to choose private healthcare services over public. According to the survey, more than 60% of rural population also uses the private healthcare services. The major reason behind this is the poor quality of service and patient care, shortfall of doctors and technicians and long hours of waiting time in the public hospitals.
There is a visible growth in the chronic and Non-communicable diseases like Infections, Cancers, Blood diseases, endocrine, metabolic and nutritional problems, Diabetes, Psychiatric and neurological disorders, eye and ear problems, Cardiovascular and respiratory problems and Gastro-intestinal problems, TB and Asthma among the population. There are different causes behind this rise in diseases like environmental changes, lifestyle changes and socioeconomic changes. Prevalence of these diseases has become a reason behind the alarming mortality rates in India. The government of India has been working across the states to provide quality and affordable healthcare to its people. Growing prevalence of diseases and technological advances in disease diagnosis has driven demand for the diagnostics market in India.
There are around 1,00,000 laboratories in India. Out of these, 70% labs cater to pathology services and around 30% to radiology and imaging requirements. The diagnostic test results are a crucial aspect in deciding the treatment. Reliable and timely diagnosis assures correct analysis and treatment schedule and reduces the overall treatment costs. According to a research report of Seattle-based non-governmental organization PATH, 72% of the industry is comprised of private healthcare providers and the major share is taken by the unorganized laboratories and very few are accredited.
NABL standards are very high and it is expensive for many labs to meet the infrastructure that is required for accreditation. Though small and medium sized laboratories are bridging the gap between the high demand for diagnostic needs, the costs involved in getting the accreditation these small and medium size laboratories cannot afford it. Government needs to come out with basic quality standards, which all laboratories must meet to assure the similar quality of service and help it be accessible and affordable to all. Currently the cost for radiology tests like X-rays, CT, MRI and PET CT are 4 times than that in the public hospitals.
Due to the high set up cost, the labs and the hospitals try to recoup these expenses from the patients. Also the given fact that there is a shortage of Doctors and Technical staff to carry out these tests makes these scans more expensive. The cost of a CT scan in metro cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore and Coimbatore all almost similar and range between INR 2,500 to INR 10,000. Any single part of the body CT scan like Head, Brain, nose, neck, shoulder, arm, wrist, leg, knee joint, PNS, Orbit, Spine (ls or lr or lumbar or lumbo) and temporal bone may cost anything between INR 2,500 to INR 6,000. Other CT scans of Abdomen, pelvis and cardiovascular scans may cost you more than INR 6,000. Few scans may require a contrast agent to have a clear and accurate image, those scans may be charged INR 2,000 more than the regular scans.
How to Save 50% of CT scan cost ?
Technology is changing the face of almost every industrial sector. The new digital platform offers solutions on usability, convenience and accessibility. Cost comparison and online payment /COD and multiple choice options (go cashless after demonetization) and information database are in trend. Many healthcare providers are taking help of technology and innovation to offer one stop destination for healthcare services like online appointments/registrations, medicines, home care services, ambulance, diagnostics, Electronic medical records and more. With this, healthcare services are able to reach the patients easily and are also cutting the cost of overall services including treatments.
BookMyScans is one such platform that has made its mark over the metro cities of India to offer great deals on the services provided to enhance the customer experience and this has benefited 10,000+ patients in a big way. Patients now have access to all the diagnostic centers around them, helping them save their time and money effortlessly. BookMyScans has been successfully able to streamline the pain points of the patients while availing healthcare services. It is an online guide that is user friendly and offers transparent services to the user and guarantees min 50% discounts on the rates of the CT scan across the cities. This has helped the doctors as well as the patients in managing health and cycle of their diagnosis, cure or treatments and reports.
BookMyScans partners only with center that are AERB approved and ISO and NABL certified and that are equipped with standard and technically compliant and safe machines. These partners are audited periodically to assure you timely and quality services while they maintain the technical competence in the market. This is essential to make proper healthcare available by ensuring affordability and accessibility to all the people of our country.
CT Scan cost after 50% discount
CT scan in Bangalore – From Rs.999/-
CT scan in Hyderabad – From Rs.1999/-
CT scan in Chennai – From Rs.1900/-
CT scan in Mumbai – From Rs.1999/-
CT scan in Delhi – From Rs.999/-
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