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Two Views of Thoracic Cavity CT scans.

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What are Thoracic Cavity CT Scans?

A doctor or physician may order a CT scan of the thoracic cavity to make detailed pictures and analyze the internal structure. Computerized tomography (CT) scanning is useful to get a very detailed 3D image of certain parts of the body.

The process begins by taking many different X-ray views at various different angles, which are then combined with the use of computer processing to create cross-sectional images of the bones and soft tissue inside of your body, including tissues inside of solid organ. Ordinary X-ray testing does not show clear images of soft tissue, so doctors often request CT scanning to get a good image of soft tissue including organs, muscles, blood vessels, nerves, and the brain. Sometimes a contrast dye is used as it shows up clearer on the screen.

During a quality CT scan of the thoracic cavity, cross sectional pictures of the chest, heart, lungs, and upper abdomen are created.

Reasons for a Thoracic Cavity CT scan: 

CT scans are used for a multitude of reasons. They may be done to check for certain cancers in various different ways including to detect abnormal tumors, growths or lumps. They also identify the location of tumors, the stage of cancer, and where to perform a biopsy.

A thoracic cavity CT scan can be used to guide doctors or surgeons during a procedure, such as a biopsy. They are important in planning for certain types of therapy and surgery, as well as in the aftermath to determine whether the patient’s body is responding to treatment.

CT scans can be used to detect cysts or infections in the body. They can also identify the bone structures within the body and can accurately measure the density of bone.

A CT scan is often used to quickly inspect a patient after an accident in order to identify traumatic internal injuries.

A Thoracic Cavity CT scan may help diagnose (find): 

A thoracic CT may be done after a chest injury, to look for infection or inflammation in the chest, or to look for blood clots in the lungs.

A CT scan of the thoracic cavity may diagnose blood vessel abnormalities, fluid buildup, an aneurysm, or enlarged lymph nodes.

The test may diagnose a widening of the large airways of the lungs.

A thoracic CT scan may show lung tumors, esophageal cancer or other tumors, nodules or cysts in the chest.


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