About Computed Tomography (CT)
Computed Tomography (CT), also known as computerized tomography or computed axial tomography (CAT), is an advanced X-ray technology that produces a sequence of detailed cross-sectional images of the interior of the head, spine, chest, abdomen or other areas of the body. The complex images are produced by rotating a focused X-ray beam around the patient and taking these X-ray images from numerous angles, guided by a computer. CT examinations produce detailed organ studies by capturing multiple individual image “slices.”
Marquis Diagnostic Imaging is different than other imaging facilities because we offer the most advanced CT technology; the Aquilion One. The Aquilion One 320 detector row CT scanner is unparalleled in its capabilities, which include: detection and measurement of toothpick thin blockages in the blood vessels, detection of nearly imperceptible changes in blood flow, creation of flawless 3-D images of any organ, joint or body part, in less than a heartbeat. It is equally important to note that this groundbreaking technology comes at no additional cost to the patient and with significantly less radiation than other CT scanners currently in use.
Marquis is Committed to Radiation Dose Reduction
Radiation Safety is important to Marquis
All patients undergoing a CT exam at Marquis are scanned on a state-of-the-art 320-detector row CT scanner. The patient never gets diverted to a different site with an older scanner. We are the only company in AZ to offer the most advanced CT technology- this way patients can be assured that we are taking every precaution to ensure radiation exposure is as minimal as possible.
Marquis has Dose Alert Technology on all CT scanners
Both of our CT scanners are fully equipped with the most recent dose reduction features including QDS+ (Quantum Denoising Software), AIDR (Adaptive Iterative Dose Reduction) and SureExposure (Automatic Exposure Control - XYZ dose modulation).
One of our Chief Medical Directors, Dr. Jack Bodker, is a Radiation Safety Officer and takes every step possible to achieve the best imaging results with the least amount of radiation for the patient.
Radiation tracking is a focus of Marquis Imaging. Quarterly, we will provide referring physicians with our radiation dose tracking report. The Aquilion ONE is the first CT scanner to have Dose Alert Technology that automatically monitors the level of radiation to ensure that a patient is never over-radiated.
What to expect
For your CT examination you will be asked to lie on a table that rides on a track through the doughnut-shaped scanner. As the procedure begins, you will hear humming, buzzing or clicking sounds from the CT machine. The table will move in short steps through the scanner as the CT tube rotates around you. At each step, the scanner completes a separate view. The information is processed by the computer and displayed as images on a video screen to the technologist.
You should remain as still as possible to produce the clearest images. Depending upon the procedure being performed, you may be asked to hold your breath for up to 30 seconds.
Tell your physician and the technologist if you think you may possibly be pregnant. You may be asked to change into a gown. We will advise you about any dietary restrictions when scheduling your appointment. You may continue to take prescribed medications with small sips of water prior to your exam.
- CT Exams with IV Contrast – No food 4 hours prior to the procedure. Drink water up to 48 hours in advance of the procedure. We encourage all patients, receiving IV contrast to hydrate, as it may be difficult to start and IV if the patient is dehydrated.
- CT Exams of the Abdomen and Pelvis may require the patient to drink an oral barium, the Marquis scheduling team will notify you if this is needed for your particular exam at the time you schedule.
- CT Coronary Angiogram- No caffeine or erectile dysfunction medication 24 hours prior to the exam, please follow the IV contrast preparation as well. Special instructions will be provided by the Marquis team regarding beta blockers.
Side effects and complications
If you are given contrast medium intravenously, you may notice a metallic taste in your mouth and a warm sensation throughout your body. These sensations are harmless and subside within a few moments. Oral contrast medium may cause slight changes in bowel movements, which soon return to normal.
Some patients may have an allergic reaction to the contrast medium, which is iodine-based. Patients who are allergic to iodine may experience itching, sneezing or other allergic symptoms in response. If you are allergic to iodine but must be given contrast medium to produce the proper test results, your physician may choose to pre-medicate you with steroids or other drugs. Anyone experiencing such a reaction will be treated before being released to go home. In rare cases, the contrast medium can trigger anaphylaxis, a life-threatening allergic reaction in which the tissues of the airway become swollen enough to restrict breathing. In such cases, emergency treatment is immediately given. Please let us know if you know or think you are allergic to iodine.
Patients who have diabetes or renal disease require special care because the kidneys are involved in filtering iodine from the bloodstream. These patients should consult with their physician about proper scheduling of the CT scan.