n CME : Your SA Journal of CPD - Multidetector computed tomography of the abdomen : main article

Volume 24, Issue 6
  • ISSN : 0256-2170



The development of multidetector CT (MDCT) imaging has not only further improved diagnostic CT imaging, but has also expanded the role of CT, including CT angiography and CT colonography. <BR>MDCT involves spiral / helical scanning, replacing the single CT detector with up to 64 detectors, and the use of massive computing power for image reconstruction. <BR>Up to 64 image slices through the subject are obtained in a single 360o rotation of the X-ray tube. <BR>Atherosclerotic complications of the abdominal aorta such as aneurysms, occlusions, ulceration and dissection can be exquisitely imaged using MDCT angiography, largely replacing diagnostic catheter angiography. <BR>Accurate imaging in the hepatic arterial and portal venous phases is the major advantage of MDCT in terms of liver imaging. <BR>Subtle hyper-enhancing lesions, such as small hepatocellular carcinomas and highly vascular metastases, can be detected earlier and more accurately with improved enhancement and multiplanar imaging. <BR>Hepatic trauma can be accurately and rapidly assessed with MDCT. <BR>Multiplanar and 3-D techniques with MDCT are ideally suited to imaging of the pancreas owing to its orientation and position in the retroperitoneum. <BR>Spiral CT is well established in the evaluation of renal calculi. MDCT further improves on the accuracy of spiral CT in detecting the presence and location of calculi. <BR>MDCT colonography is a relatively new technique requiring bowel preparation and colonic gas insufflation with administration of a muscle relaxant (commonly hyoscine butylbromide). <BR>Applications of MDCT for the small bowel include Crohn's disease, small-bowel tumours, obstruction and ischaemia.

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