CT (also known as CAT scanning), or computerized tomography, is a technique that uses x-rays and computers to produce three-dimensional images of the body. Unlike traditional x-rays, which highlight dense body parts, such as bone, CT also provides detailed views of the body’s soft tissues. While conventional x-rays provide flat two-dimensional images, CT images depict a cross-section of the body.
A pet undergoing a CT scan rests on a movable table that passes through the center of a donut-shaped scanner. By moving the pet within the scanner, doctors can obtain a series of parallel images, called slices. We analyze this series of slices to understand the three-dimensional structure of the body. Occasionally, we will give an injection of a substance called a contrast agent to enhance the difference between tissues.
Within seconds of obtaining the images, they can be viewed at any computer station in the hospital. These images are also then transferred to a group of board-certified radiologists thus, allowing us to get an expert opinion on our findings.