LARRY MULVEHILL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LARRY MULVEHILL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Person undergoing CAT scan (computerized axial tomography) of the brain, seen lying within the scanner's circular detector in the background, with the operator (foreground) at a control panel. An image of a slice through the subject's brain appears on a computer screen. CAT scans produce an image from a series of X-ray beams, passed through the subject from angles around the circular X-ray scanner. The scanner is known as a tomograph (from the Greek word meaning slice). CAT scans provide soft tissue contrast, differentiating between bone, fat & muscle due to the varying X-ray absorption of such tissues. They can be used to locate tumours and blood clots.
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