Computerised tomography - or computerised axial tomography (CT or CAT scan) - is an X-ray imaging technique which allows the assessment of soft tissues as well as bones.

 

Body 'slices'

If X-rays are taken from different angles around the body, a computer can analyse the image and construct a three-dimensional representation of it. As there is no way to print a three-dimensional image, the computer can then be instructed to 'slice' this reconstruction into thin two-dimensional 'slices' and present these on X-ray film in sequence, allowing the trained doctor to reconstruct the structures again in his mind in three dimensions.

Synonyms: 
CT
CT scan
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