CT Scan for pancreatic cancer

A CT (computed tomography) is a detailed and specialist type of X-ray.

Pancreatic Cancer Action

The CT unit is linked to a sophisticated computer that builds up lots of very detailed images from inside your body.  Having a CT scan is completely painless.

The scanner is shaped like a doughnut.  It is about three feet wide and is open at both ends. You will be asked to lie still on a table, which slides into the scanner. If necessary, your head and neck will be supported.  The scan usually lasts from 15 to 45 minutes, but it depends on the area to be examined. If you need a CT scan, your local scanning department will offer you more detailed written information.

What will happen?

Preparation for a CT scan can vary from patient to patient. The x-ray department, your doctor or nurse will tell you what you need to do before you go for your scan.

You may be asked to drink and/or have an injection of dye.  This allows the doctor to see the area being scanned more clearly.

If you are allergic to iodine, fish or dyes, you need to tell the person doing the CT scan in advance, as you may not be able to have the dye, drink or injection.

You will need to let your doctor or nurse know if you:

  • Have any allergies
  • Have asthma
  • Have diabetes
  • Have kidney problems
  • Are taking any medication
  • Are pregnant
  • Are afraid of needles
  • Have had any problems before with any type of X-ray or radiology examination.

Remember you will not be enclosed in any way

When will I get the result?

It can take a few weeks for the report to be made available to your consultant. You will be given a return appointment to discuss your results and what happens next.

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Information Product № Published 03/10/2019
Last Updated 15/10/2019 Next Review Due 03/10/2022