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CT Neck Contrast Test 

Your doctor has ordered a CT (Computed Tomography) of your neck. CT is an advanced form of X-rays that uses a narrow X-ray beam and advanced computer software to create detailed cross-sectional images of the body organs.

C.T. scan

The CT scan can be described as a diagnostic that uses x-rays and a computer to take precise images from inside your body. First, it captures images from various angles. Then, computers combine them to create a 3D (3D) photo.

C.T. (or C.A.T.) refers to computerized (axial) tomography. It is common to have a C.T. scan at the radiology (radiology) department as an inpatient. Radiographers operate the scanner. The entire appointment could take about an hour and a quarter, depending on which area of your body they're scanning.

The reason you may need the need for a C.T. scan

It is possible to be able to C.T. scan:

  • to determine a variety of illnesses, like cancer

  • To determine where the cancer is located and how close it is to nearby organs and its size. This can help doctors determine whether further tests are required or the type of treatment you require.

  • to see if the treatment is effective

  • to be part of the follow-up following your treatment

The preparation for the C.T. scan

Certain CT scans require special preparation in advance.

In most scans, there is the option of drinking a beverage or injecting contrast medium, or both. It's a dye that reveals body tissues more clearly in the scan. The injection is administered through a thin, small tube (cannula) within your arm.

The tube remains in place until you have completed your scan if there are any problems following the injection.

What happens?

The radiographer may request that you change to a gown suitable for hospital use. Remove jewelry and other metal objects like hair clips and bras in the area to be scanned. Metal interferes with scans produced by the scanner.

In the scanner room

The radiographer or assistant will take you to the scanner room if you're ready and ready. The CT scanning machine is big and has the shape of doughnuts.

There is a chance that you will receive an injection of dye referred to as a contrast medium via small tubes (cannula) within your arm. You may:

  • Feel like you're hot, flushed, and hot for a second or two minutes.

  • You may notice a metallic taste when you open your mouth.

  • You may feel as if you're passing urine even though you feel like you're not - this is not uncommon and will pass quickly.

Inform your radiographer that you are nervous or uncomfortable about getting the scan.

Receiving the C.T. scan

It is common to lay down on the couch machine on your back. The radiographer will leave the room when you're in the proper place. They will be able to see you on a television monitor or through a window in your control area. You can also talk to one another via an intercom.

The couch is slowly moving between forward and backward in the hole in the scanner. The scanner takes photos when you traverse it.

The scan isn't painful; however, it can be uncomfortable as you must remain still. Contact your radiographer if feeling stiff and have to move.

During the scan

You'll hear a whirring sound coming from the scanner.

The radiographer may request you to keep your breath at certain times.

The typical scan lasts between 20 and 30 minutes.

After the scan is completed, the radiographer returns to the room and lowers the sofa so you can get up.

After your C.T. scan, you will be able to see the results of your C.T.

The hospital stays with you for 15-30 minutes if you receive an injection with the color. This is to ensure that it causes you to feel sick. This is not a common occurrence.

Your radiographer takes the cannula in your arm before you head to your home.

You will be able to head home, go back to work, or to the ward shortly after. Then, you can take a normal diet and drink.

Possible risks

The CT scan can be considered a certain test for most people. However, as with all medical tests, there are risks to it. Therefore, the doctor and radiographer should ensure that the advantages of the test outweigh the dangers.

Allergy reaction

Rarely do individuals experience allergies to the color (contrast medium). The most common reaction is the feeling of sweating, weakness, and trouble breathing. The radiographist will ask you whether you are allergic to anything before introducing your contrast media. Let them know immediately if they are feeling unwell after using it.

Swelling and bruising

There could be a tiny bump around the place where you put the needle into.

There's a chance that the contrast media may escape from the vein. This could cause inflammation and pain in the arm or hand; however, it's not common.

Kidney issues

There is a slight chance there is a small chance that contrast media may cause kidney damage. Therefore, your radiographer reviews the most recent blood test results before the scan to ensure your kidneys function properly.


Exposure to radiation during a C.T. scan could increase the risk of getting cancer shortly. Discuss this with your doctor in case this concerns you.


Women who are pregnant should only undergo C.T. scans for urgent situations. Make contact with the department as quickly as you can before the scan if you're pregnant or think you may be.

How do you get your results?

You should see your results within one or two weeks.

The anticipation of results may cause anxiety. Talk to your doctor or nurse about what time it will take to obtain the results. The doctor who ordered the test, if you've not received any news after several weeks.

There could be contact numbers of a specialist nurse you can call for details if required. In addition, it can be helpful to talk to a trusted person or a relative about the way you feel.


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