CT scans are frequently used to evaluate the brain (head). Brain CT scans are typically ordered for a variety of symptoms such as headaches, weakness, seizures, confusion, etc. They are also used to exclude a tumour, aneurysm or infection, and as a follow up test for patients who have suffered strokes, bleeds or undergone brain surgery.
Lake Imaging performs Brain CT exams at the following locations:
- Wendouree – Howitt St (see map) Request an appointment
- Ballarat – St John of God Hospital (see map) Request an appointment
- Geelong – East Court (see map) Request an appointment
- St John of God Hospital – Geelong (see map) Request an appointment
- North Melbourne (see map) Request an appointment
- Melton – Unitt St (see map) Request an appointment
- Sunbury (see map) Request an appointment
- Caroline Springs – West Springs (see map) Request an appointment
- Kyneton (see map) Request an appointment
What to bring
- A referral from your doctor or specialist is required for this examination, please ensure you bring this to your appointment.
- Medicare or concession card
- Previous imaging not performed at Lake Imaging
You may have nothing to eat or drink for one (1) hour prior to your examination.
Please inform the staff at the time of making your appointment if you are taking any diabetic medication, have kidney disease or have had a previous reaction to x-ray contrast.
What to expect during my procedure
You will then be asked a few safety questions before being asked to lie flat on the CT examination table with your head resting on a special cradle. You will need to keep very still for the duration of the scan, as the table moves through the gantry opening and the image data is acquired. You may hear a humming noise during the scan, but no moving parts will touch you.
Sometimes an intravenous injection of contrast medium (x-ray dye) will be required. The contrast can provide valuable information by highlighting vascular tissue and blood vessels on the CT images. If contrast is required this will be discussed with you prior to the injection and you will be asked to complete a safety questionnaire and provide consent.
During the injection you may notice a sensation of warmth and a metallic taste or smell. These sensations will quickly subside.
The CT scan will take just a few minutes.
Risks and side effects
CT scans involve the use of ionising radiation. CT scans will only be performed when any potential risks are far outweighed by the benefits to the patient. Lake Imaging’s state of the art CT scanners and staff trained in radiation reduction techniques use the latest in CT dose efficient technology to ensure the minimum dose necessary is used to produce the best quality images for an accurate diagnosis.
If it is possible that you may be pregnant, please inform our radiology team before your examination to avoid any risks to your unborn child.
For further information regarding radiation safety please visit: http://www.insideradiology.com.au/pages/view.php?T_id=57
Contrast injections can make some patients feel nauseous or on rare occasions cause an allergic reaction.
If you are worried or concerned about having a CT scan you should discuss this with your referring doctor or medical specialist before coming for your examination.
Who will perform and report my examination
At Lake Imaging your CT examination will be performed by a radiographer (or medical imaging technologist), who has a degree in medical imaging. A Radiologist (a doctor specialising in the interpretation of medical images), will prepare and send a report to your referring doctor detailing the findings of your examination.
What to expect after my procedure
You will be free to leave our clinic shortly after your CT scan has been completed. You may, then drive yourself home, eat and drink normally and resume your normal activities.
If you have had a contrast injection, this will be absorbed and passed out of your body in your urine during the next 8 to 10 hours. Drinking plenty of fluid will assist this process.
How do I receive my results?
If your CT results are urgent, or you have an appointment straight after the scan with your doctor or health care provider, Lake Imaging will arrange to have your results available immediately delivered to your referring doctor.
Otherwise your referring doctor or health care provider will receive your report within 48 hours of your examination.
Please ensure that you make a follow up appointment with your referring doctor or health care provider to discuss your results.
Can I bring a relative or friend?
You are welcome to have a friend or relative accompany you for your appointment but for radiation safety reasons, they will only be allowed into the CT room under special circumstances.
Children will not be allowed into the CT room and you will need to make arrangements for their care during your examination.