Sinus / Orbital / Facial CT scan
What is a CT scan of the sinuses, orbits or face?
CT scanning of the sinuses, orbits, or face uses a thin beam of X-ray and a rapidly moving X-ray tube to acquire data from different angles around your head, which is used to create cross sectional images. CT scans of the sinuses, orbits, or face can provide more detailed information about bone and soft tissue structures than standard X-rays of the head. Therefore, this can provide more information related to injuries, infections and masses, and can be used to evaluate patients with headaches, nasal congestion, orbital abnormalities, and fractures, among other reasons.
How do I prepare for the exam?
- Arrive 20 minutes prior to your exam.
- There is no preparation for this exam.
- Earrings and facial piercings will need to be removed.
What will happen during the exam?
During the exam you may be asked to lie either on your back or on your stomach. The table will rise up and move in and out of a large circle.
Once the technologist has positioned the patient it will be very important to hold still. A few images will be taken so that the technologist can set up the area to be scanned. Once the scan is set up the procedure will start.
How long will the procedure take and how will I learn my results?
Depending on the reason for the exam, the procedure can take anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes, and you will get the results of the exam from your doctor.
What will happen after the exam?
After the exam, the technologist will process your images using a computer. A radiologist will evaluate the images within 24 hours and dictate a report. A report will be sent to your physician.
Radiologyinfo.org for Patients
The radiology information resource for patients. RadiologyInfo.org tells you how various X-ray, CT, MRI, ultrasound, radiation therapy and other procedures are performed. It also addresses what you may experience and how to prepare for the exams. The website contains over 200 procedure, exam and disease descriptions covering diagnostic and interventional radiology, nuclear medicine, radiation therapy and radiation safety and is updated frequently with new information. All material on the RadiologyInfo.org website is reviewed and approved by experts in the field of radiology from the ACR and RSNA, as well as other professional radiology organizations.