What is CT Colonography?
CT Colonography or Virtual Colonoscopy is a new radiology procedure designed to look for colon polyps and cancers.
Hamilton Radiology has the latest technology and software for improved diagnostic accuracy and confidence in this method of imaging.
The advantage of CT Colonography is that it is very safe and can be used in people who are too sick to undergo traditional colonoscopies or barium enemas.
What to expect prior to the procedure
Upon booking your appointment you will be given a preparation pack containing the following:
Detailed information about the bowel cleansing process
A packet of laxatives. The laxative is used to cleanse the bowel and rid the colon of any stools. You may experience many bowel movements over several hours.
It is necessary for the colon to be completely empty of food residue. This will be achieved by a restricted diet and laxatives.
What happens during a CT Colonography?
The radiographer will get you to lie on the CT x-ray table. A small tube will be inserted into your rectum and carbon dioxide (CO 2) is introduced into the bowel until it is fully distended. While you are lying on your back you will be asked to hold your breath and the CT scan will be performed. You then turn over onto your stomach and again holding your breath the second CT scan is performed. The Radiologist will check the scan and once the images are completed the tube will be removed.
Is CT Colonography painful?
Prior to the procedure a small bowel relaxant will be administered as the distention of the colon with CO 2 may be uncomfortable. You may get the feeling of fullness, as though you need to pass wind. It should not be painful. This discomfort will last for just a few minutes.
How long does it take?
The actual scan is about 10-15 minutes but you will be in the department for approximately 30 minutes.
What happens after the test?
You will be allowed to leave straight after the procedure and resume your normal diet! The Radiologist, who is trained in interpreting radiology examinations will analyse all the images and send a written report to your Specialist or GP who will then share the results with you.
What do I do now?
To make an appointment for your CT Colonography please phone 0800 4273828.