What Is It Like to Get a CAT Scan of Your Abdomen and Pelvis?


Quick Answer

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, patients should not eat or drink anything for six hours prior to a Computerized Tomography scan of the abdomen and pelvis. Patients feel a metallic taste and a warm sensation when taking a contrast fluid.

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Full Answer

In preparation for a CAT scan of the abdomen and pelvis, you should wear a loose outfit and abstain from food or drink for four to six hours. You should discuss beforehand with the examiner about any medications you could be undertaking, advises radiologyinfo.org. Jewels worn into the examination room may interfere with the test procedure.

For bowel scans, the examiner may request you to take a special dye that improves visibility of the organs. The special dye creates a slight burning sensation and a chalky taste in the mouth, according to the NLM. You may also experience a warm flushing of the body that lasts only a few seconds.

The CAT scan is painless and easy, and lasts for about 30 minutes. Apart from the head, the whole body gets into the scanner through a retractable bed, observes radiologyinfo.org. Common conditions observed through the test include kidney stones, pancreatitis and colon cancer. CAT scans have the health effects of exposing the body to radiation.

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