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What Is A Ct Scan For A Brain Tumour
A CT scan uses X-rays to produce images of the brain, which are interpreted by a neuroradiologist to confirm if a mass is present. CT stands for computed tomography, meaning that a computer controls the movement of the scanning equipment, which consists of a tube that spins rapidly around the patient who is lying safely inside the CT machine.
Whilst a CT scan can show the size, shape and location of a brain tumour, an MRI scan is then required in order to gain more detailed information.
CT scans are good for X-rays of bones, so they may be used for meningioma to assess if there is any bone involvement, if this is suspected after an MRI scan.
How Do Doctors Decide Which Imaging A Person Should Receive
We usually use CT first for most people, unless a tumor is much better seen on MRI. But we go back and forth as needed. If we see something on a CT scan were unsure about, we may recommend an MRI for further evaluation. If someone has several MRIs and is unable to lie still or hold their breath so we can get a good image, we may suggest a CT as an alternative. Were guided by the principle of whether the benefits of a test outweigh its risks. Thats what medical imaging is about.
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What Are The Common Causes Of A Brain Tumor
The causes of brain tumors are not yet clearly known however, there are common risk factors or triggers that may cause a brain tumor, such as:
- Being overweight or obese increases the risk of certain types of brain tumors.
- An unhealthy lifestyle including smoking and excessive alcohol consumption may trigger abnormal cell growth.
- The risk of getting brain tumors becomes higher with increasing age.
- Repeated exposure to radiation through ionizing radiation, X-rays, and computed tomography scans, power lines, nuclear plants, mobile phones, and cell phone towers may trigger tumors.
- Exposure to certain harmful chemicals may trigger a brain tumor. Examples include diesel exhaust, coal tar volatiles, tobacco smoke, arsenic compounds, cadmium compounds, nickel compounds, and more.
- People who have had cancer such as leukemia as a child have a higher risk of brain tumors as an adult. Adults who have had cancer also may have a chance of getting brain tumors, but further research is needed to confirm this finding.
- In some rare cases, brain tumors may be genetically inherited. If a lot of people in a family have had brain tumors, an individual may be at an increased risk of the condition.
What To Expect After The Completion Of Your Brain Tumor Mri
One of our radiologists will begin interpreting your results almost immediately at the conclusion of your MRI. He or she will then complete a detailed report and forward it to the doctor who referred you to American Health Imaging within 24 hours. Your doctor will initiate contact with you to discuss the results.
Visiting one of our imaging centers can save you significant money and time. If you need a brain tumor MRI, request an appointment today.
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What Is A Ct Scan Of The Brain
A CT of the brain is a noninvasive diagnostic imaging procedure that usesspecialX-raysmeasurements to produce horizontal, or axial, images of the brain. Brain CT scans can provide more detailed information aboutbrain tissue and brain structures than standard X-rays of the head, thusproviding more data related to injuries and/or diseases of the brain.
During a brain CT, the X-ray beam moves in a circle around the body,allowing many different views of the brain. The X-ray information is sentto a computer that interprets the X-ray data and displays it in atwo-dimensional form on a monitor.
Brain CT scans may be done with or without “contrast.” Contrast refers to asubstance taken by mouth or injected into an intravenous line thatcauses the particular organ or tissue under study to be seen more clearly.Contrast examinations may require you to fast for a certain period of timebefore the procedure. Your physician will notify you of this prior to theprocedure.
What Are The Advantages Of Ct
With a CT scan, we can create an image of almost the entire body, from the neck to the thighs, in a few seconds. CTs are incredibly useful for diagnosing and staging cancer, checking whether it has come back, and monitoring whether a treatment is working. Its very effective for surveying the entire body to look for places where the cancer has spread, such as the lungs, liver, or bone. These are called metastases. Most of the time, CT is the first choice to stage cancer.
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What Happens After A Ct Of The Brain
If contrast media was used during your brain CT scan, you may bemonitored for a period of time to check for any side effects orreactions to the contrast media. Notify your radiologist or if youexperience itching, swelling, rash or difficulty breathing. If younotice any pain, redness and/or swelling at the IV site after youreturn home following your procedure, you should notify your doctor asthis could indicate an infection or other type of reaction.
Otherwise, there is no special type of care required after a CT of thebrain. Most patients are permitted to resume their usual diet andactivities. Your doctor may provide additional or alternateinstructions after the procedure, depending on your particularsituation.
How Are Molecular Markers Used To Diagnose A Brain Tumour
Once scan results have confirmed the presence of a tumour, a patient will be referred for a biopsy in order to make a more accurate diagnosis. The only exception to this is when a tumour is in a position that would make this procedure too risky to undertake.
A biopsy is a neurosurgical operation under general anaesthetic in which a thin hollow needle is inserted into the tumour, and a sample of the cells that it contains is taken out for analysis. A biopsy can be a procedure by itself, or it can happen as part of a neurosurgical operation to remove as much of the tumour as possible.
Only when a tissue sample is investigated in a laboratory by a neuropathologist can finer details about the tumour be clarified. The sample is viewed through a microscope and classified by the physical characteristics that can be observed . Additional tests are then run to look at the genetic characteristics of the tumour . The combined information then guides the treatment plan, and is particularly relevant when identifying any drugs that may be used to influence any specific genetic pathways that are driving tumour growth.
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How Is Brain Cancer Diagnosed
Interpreting a CT or MRI scan is often challenging because disease processes can look similar. For example, an aggressive primary brain tumor like glioblastoma can resemble a metastatic tumor that originated somewhere else in the body. These lesions can also look like a brain abscess or even multiple sclerosis. It is important to quickly and correctly diagnose these conditions because each requires a different evaluation and treatment. Effective treatment should begin promptly.
Radiologists are trained in reading and interpreting many different kinds of imaging studies, including X-rays, CT scans, MRIs and other imaging tests, from all parts of the body. Neuroradiologists have completed additional specialized training specifically focused on interpreting imaging studies of the brain and spinal cord.
Board-certified neuroradiologists at The University of Kansas Health System are available around the clock to review CT and MRI scans and discuss results with your care team.
Additional tests a neuroradiologist may recommend include:
A CT scan of the chest, and possibly the abdomen and pelvis, may be performed if you have risk factors for metastatic cancer or if your physician suspects it. This test gives specialists the opportunity to look at the lungs, adrenal glands, bone and other sites in the body that are often affected by metastatic cancers.
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What Is Ct Scanning Of The Head
Computed tomography, more commonly known as a CT or CAT scan, is a diagnostic medical imaging test. Like traditional x-rays, it produces multiple images or pictures of the inside of the body.
A CT scan generates images that can be reformatted in multiple planes. It can even generate three-dimensional images. Your doctor can review these images on a computer monitor, print them on film or via a 3D printer, or transfer them to a CD or DVD.
CT images of internal organs, bones, soft tissue, and blood vessels provide greater detail than traditional x-rays. This is especially true for soft tissues and blood vessels.
CT scanning provides more detailed information on head injuries, stroke, brain tumors, and other brain diseases than regular x-rays.
What Is A Scan
There are various types of scan that can produce a 3D image of the inside of your head, including your brain.
The two types of scan that are most commonly used are:
CT stands for Computerised Tomography. You may also sometimes hear doctors referring to CT scans as CAT scans – these are the same thing.
CT scanners use x-rays to take several cross-sectional pictures through your head, then use a computer to stack these 2D picture ‘slices’ into a 3D image.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging, or MRI, uses magnetic fields, rather than x-rays. MRI scanners take pictures from several angles around your head, then build these into a 3D image.
What other types of scan might I have?
There are some other types of scan that may be used to diagnose a brain tumour, or to find out more about a diagnosed tumour. These include:
- PET scans
- SPECT scans
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Can A Brain Tumor Be Detected By Ct Scan
A brain tumor is a growth or mass of abnormal cells in your brain. Several different types of brain tumors exist. Some brain tumors are benign, and some are malignant. Brain tumors can start in the brain, or cancer can begin in other parts of the body and spread to the brain as secondary brain tumors. If brain tumor is suspected, doctor may recommend a number of tests and procedures, such as:
- Imaging tests. Magnetic resonance imaging is usually used to help diagnose brain tumors. At times a dye is injected via a vein in the arm during MRI study. A number of specialized MRI scan components, such as perfusion MRI, functional MRI, and magnetic resonance spectroscopy can help your doctor evaluate the tumor and plan treatment. At times other imaging tests are recommended in certain situations, including CT scan in Gurgaon and positron emission tomography .
MRIscans are used most often to search for brain diseases. These scans will nearly always show a brain tumor, if one is present. Doctors can frequently get an idea about what type of tumor it may be, based on how it looks on the scan and where it is in the brain.
MRI is used for looking at the spinal cord and brain and is considered the best way to search for tumors in these areas. The images they offer are usually more comprehensive than those from CT scans. But they do not pick up the bones of the skull as well as CT scans and as a result may not show the effects of tumors on the skull.
Other Common Symptoms Of Brain Tumors
In addition to the above, you may need a brain tumor MRI if you display any of these general symptoms:
- Seizures: Myoclonic seizures refer to those that cause either one or several muscle twitches, body jerks, or spasms. Some people also refer to them as convulsions. A tonic-clonic seizure, previously known as a grand mal seizure, means that a persons body tone changes and he or she loses consciousness. It can also cause confusion, headache, weakness, sore muscles, and lack of breathing for several seconds. Sensory seizures involve changes in sensations such as hearing, vision, and smell with no loss of consciousness. Finally, a complex partial seizure can cause a total or partial loss of consciousness and repetitive twitching motions.
- Sudden changes in personality not due to new hobbies or interests
- Nausea and/or vomiting without other explanation
- Difficulty sleeping without other explanation
- Loss of balance when walking
Several additional symptoms depend on the exact location of the tumor within the brain.
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Role Of Neuropathology In Diagnosis
A pathologist is a physician who is trained in analyzing tissue samples from all parts of the body, often using a microscope to identify fine details. These specialists understand the complicated interpretation of studies such as:
- Flow cytometry, which looks for important surface markers on hundreds of tumor cells
- Fluorescence in-situ hybridization testing for chromosome abnormalities in the tumor cells
- Polymerase chain reaction testing, which can amplify portions of the tumor cells’ DNA
- Cytology, which looks at cells in fluid collections, usually spinal fluid
- Special stains and many others
The University of Kansas Cancer Center has one of the few neuropathologists in the Kansas City region.
Becoming board-certified in neuropathology requires focused training in studying diseases and conditions found in the brain and spine and interpreting tissue samples from these locations. Because many different brain conditions can appear to be quite similar under the microscope, a neuropathologist plays an important role in helping the care team arrive at the correct diagnosis.
Is An Mri Scan A Better Alternative To A Ct Scan Alone
Due to the risk of radiation with CT scan, a safer alternative is an MRI scan.
Along with being painless and non-invasive, it does not use any harmful ionizing radiation that may increase the risk of cancer. This imaging method uses a combination of radio waves and a strong magnetic field to create sharp, clear images of the inside of the body.
In some cases, an MRI is much better at showing certain cancers than a CT scan.
For instance, prostate and uterus cancers and certain liver cancers are difficult to detect by a CT scan, and an MRI scan is often a better option. For example, a multiparametric MRI, which is used by Ezra, is usually recommended for screening for prostate cancer. Similarly, bone and brain metastases are usually better observed by an MRI scan.
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What Happens During A Ct Scan Of The Brain
Brain CT scans may be performed on an outpatient basis or as part ofyour hospital stay. Procedures may vary depending on your condition andyour physician’s practices.
Generally, a brain CT scan involves the following steps:
While the brain CT itself causes no pain, having to lie still for thelength of the procedure might cause some discomfort or pain,particularly in the case of a recent injury or invasive procedure . The technologist will use all possible comfort measures andcomplete the procedure as quickly as possible to minimize anydiscomfort or pain.