CT, CAT or computed tomography scan is a computed image of the internal tomography of an individual. The computed tomography machine is a decidedly donut-shape than can be mechanically pointed at an affected area with superior accuracy. Unlike MRIs, computed tomography is an x-ray, so precautions regarding radiation exposure are always taken.
In a computed tomography, a three-dimensional image is created from a serious of two-dimensional tomographic images. Because of the donut-shape of the computed tomography machine, a complete, three-hundred-and-sixty degree picture of the area can be taken.
The scan takes minute images from around the body in a two-dimensional format. Further, an individual having a computed tomography is prone, and the position, height and slope of the body can also be adjusted to precise measurements. This three-dimensional image of an affected area can be evaluated and examined by physicians thoroughly and in great detail.
Computed tomography scans are better at diagnosing pleural mesothelioma and peritoneal mesothelioma than other imaging scans. Like MRIs, computed tomography produces accurate images of the affected areas through high contrast. This contrast between healthy, normal tissue and tissue that is affected by mesothelioma, is visible and clear.
MRIs can highlight malignancies from regular, normal tissue. Since a MRI does not use ionizing radiation like CT scans or x-rays, it is relatively harmless to individuals. Further, MRIs provide better contrasting images than CT scans which can expedite a proper, correct diagnosis. For pericardial mesothelioma, the rarest form of the cancer, MRIs may be used to image the heart and may provide better results than other imagers.
Computed tomography is a common diagnostic tool available for mesothelioma.
Advancements in treatment for mesothelioma are also rapidly progressing. Armed with these diagnostic tools and improved treatments, individuals battling malignant mesothelioma may have a better prognosis than that if they were diagnosed years ago.
The Merck Manual. Computed Tomography. Accessed on November 9, 2010.
The Merck Manual. Asbestos-Related Disorders. Accessed on November 9, 2010.
http://www.merck.com/mmpe/sec05/ch057/ch057c.html - sec05-ch057-ch057c-1014h