CT Scanning for Ear, Nose, and Throat
Computed tomography (CT) scans have been valuable tools
in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and injuries
since 1974. Also called CAT scans, these scanners create
very detailed two- and three-dimensional pictures of
the organs, bones, and blood vessels inside the body.
CT scanning is unique in that it can scan different
types of tissues at the same time. The physician
can then select
the type of tissue to be viewed.
CT scanning significantly enhances patient care
By offering CT scanning in our office, we can perform the
scan the same day of your visit and our physicians can
initiate treatment planning right away. Patients no longer
have to go to a second facility to have the scan done and
then come back for a 3rd visit to get the results and begin
treatment. The MiniCAT™ scanner can also be used
with image-guided surgery systems, providing greater flexibility
for surgical planning and post-operative evaluation and
The CT scanner significantly enhances our physicians' abilities
to diagnose and treat chronic sinusitis, nasal airway obstructions,
and other conditions. It can also be used to help evaluate
How it works
Photo of the MiniCAT™ scanner courtesy of Xoran Technologies
CT scanners use x-rays to produce images. As with traditional
x-rays, the technology is based on the fact that different
types of tissues absorb the x-rays at different levels. This
creates variations in the exposures of the images that are
formed and results in pictures that have amazing detail and
resolution. The CT scan data is sent digitally to a computer.
Designed specifically for ENT and auditory
scans, our MiniCAT™ scanner
allows patients to sit upright comfortably in the scanner's
built-in chair rather than lying down inside an enclosed
tube. And, the radiation dose from the MiniCAT™ scanner
is lower than that of a conventional CT scan.
Inside the scanner there is a rotating frame
with an x-ray tube on one side and a detector on the other.
rotates 360 degrees around the patient. Each time it makes
a rotation it gathers another "slice" of information.
Scans taken with a MiniCAT™ scanner consist of hundreds
of slices as thin as 0.2 mm. This is almost one order of
magnitude better than scans taken with a full-body CT scanner,
which typically generates slices that are 2 to 3 mm thick.
The information that is gathered is sent to a computer where
it is manipulated to produce a two-dimensional image of the
slice. The computer puts all of the slices together to create
the complete image.
The entire scan takes about 40 seconds for an adult and
20 for a child.
For more information about CT scanning or to find out about
problems related to the ear, nose, or throat that are not
listed on this site, please contact us.