Preparing for your appointment
Many CT scans require no special preparation, but more specialist examinations do. You may be asked to fast for an examination or drink some contrast dye either prior to or during a CT scan.
Whatever the requirement, we will make sure you are fully briefed and ready for your scan day.
Contrast (CT dye)
Your investigation may require the insertion of an intravenous (IV) cannula so that contrast can be injected. This brightens the appearance of your organs and blood vessels and is necessary to investigate many conditions. If you are going to receive contrast dye, you will need to have a blood test to check your kidney function prior to the appointment.
What you must tell us in advance
If you’re diabetic and take medications for that, we will need to know in advance and you will need a very up to date kidney function blood test.
If you’re pregnant or trying to become pregnant we may need to perform a test to check that before we can safely scan you.
A full safety check will be performed when you attend for your appointment.
How much does it cost?
Self Pay Pricelist
|Examination||Price (non-contrast)||Price (contrast)|
|1 Body part||£565||£670|
|2 Body parts||£700||£810|
|3 Body parts||£800||£900|
|4+ Body parts||£900||£1025|
|CT guided biopsy||Price of diagnostic scan + £750|
|CT guided nerve root injection||£1650 all inclusive|
|CT angiography (inc. pulmonary)||£1200|
Why pay to have a CT scan?
NHS Radiology is very oversubscribed and can sometimes hold up your treatment plan or access to a specialist. In some instances paying for your own scan can help reduce this bottleneck. The scan you receive is otherwise no different.
What to expect during your procedure
The CT scanner is a slim open donut like machine. You will be asked to lie flat and still on the scanner table which moves through the scanner whilst images are taken. You may be instructed to hold your breath briefly during the scan.
How long does it take?
CT scanning has the advantage of being very fast, the actual scan itself usually takes no longer than 5-minutes. There may be some extra preparation prior to the study especially if you are to receive intravenous contrast.
Due to the complex 3D reconstructions which take place after your scan is over, your images will not be ready for viewing immediately afterwards. The radiologist will report on the study once this process is complete.
What does it feel like?
There is no sensation at all from a CT scan. If we need to inject contrast using our injector pump, some patients report the sensation of flushing, needing to pass water or very occasionally a metallic taste in their mouth. All of this wears off quickly with no lasting side effects.