SPINAL SURGERY

in Hull and East Yorkshire

GEORGE SPINK FRCS (Neurosurg.) BSc Hons

 

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CT Scan

CT scanning (computed tomography) was first developed in the early 1970s using a special x-ray machine to produce a very detailed picture. (Interestingly my father worked in the same labs as Nobel Prize winner Sir Godfrey Hounsfield whilst he was developing this technology!)

It sends several beams of radiation simultaneously from different angles allowing a computer to build up a 2-D image of the body. More modern scanners can reconstruct 3-D images as well, which show exactly what a surgeon would see during an operation. CT scans are usually very good at looking at the bony structures in the spine, rather than the softer tissues, which are seen better on MRI.

          

The scanner itself looks like a big doughnut. The patient lies on a bed that moves backwards and forwards to allow the scanner to take pictures of different areas of the body.

It does not hurt but does involve a dose of radiation and would only be recommended if absolutely necessary. (It is not affected by any metal implants you may have, but you should let us know if there is any chance that you may be pregnant, as you should not have a CT scan). The scan time can be very quick, sometimes just a few minutes, depending on the body area being imaged. 

 


MRI


CT Scan


Myelogram


Dynamic X-ray

 


Neurophysiology