Patient Experience

Patient Experience

In the CT (Computed Tomography) Department we provide a comprehensive scanning service including peripheral and coronary angiography and CT colonography, led by an experienced, expert clinical specialist radiographer.

  • A CT (Computed Tomography) scan is a detailed x-ray examination. It is a simple painless procedure, which last from 5 to 20 minutes depending on the particular examination.

  • Patients require a doctor's referral from within the hospital for a CT scan.

  • Your results will be sent to the doctor that referred you for the scan.

    If your GP did not send you for the scan then they will not automatically receive the results.

    • If you have a morning appointment, please fast from midnight - nothing to eat or drink.
    • If you have an afternoon appointment, please come fasting after a light breakfast (for example, 1 cup of tea with 1 slice of toast which must be finished by 9am).

    Any patient over 70 years of age or who has had previous renal complications (for example has had a kidney removed or who has poor kidney function), should have recent blood tests taken. Please contact your GP or the consultant you are attending in St James's Hospital about this.

    Some patients may need additional hydration due to their blood results. This may require the patient to be placed on an IV drip or given water to drink for up to two hours before the scan can start.

  • Before most CT exams of the abdomen and/or pelvis, patients will be asked to drink almost one litre of a water solution. This will be provided on arrival to the CT Department. Patients will then have to wait for up to 30 minutes (CT Abdomen), or up to 90 minutes (CT Pelvis), before the scan can start.

  • Patients will be given an IV injection for this examination. For patients intending to drive after their scan, you will need to wait for at least 30 minutes before driving.

  • CT scan examinations use x-rays which may cause a small increased risk for cancer. While this is a low risk, it is a little higher in young children or during pregnancy. As a precaution, some CT scans for female patients will be scheduled at the start of your menstrual period (within the first 10 days). Some CT scans require a contrast injection. The contrast contains iodine which can cause allergic reactions to a small number of people. Please inform the radiographer if you have had an allergic reaction to the dye in the past.

Contact Details

Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm

How to find us

Ground floor, main hospital building

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