MRI Versus CT - Both Techniques Have Some Advantages over Each Other

MRI and CT scans have some similarity with respect to their working principle, but they totally differ in their uses. Doctors find MRI scan best for soft tissue images while for scanning bones, CT scan works much better.  Unlike X-ray machine CT scan uses a beam of light instead of single ray of light and some time causes damage to DNA, if exposed to  body for longer time. Even though most of radiologist use CT scan for certain ailments like broken bones, chest X-rays and test of pneumonia.

The MRI was first invented by Dr. Raymond V. Damadian in 1971 and then collaborated with Dr. Larry Minkoff and Dr. Michael Goldsmith, expanding MRI technology and finally dedicated this pioneer technique to physician. MRI is found to be best suited for scanning soft tissue. It works on the principal magnetic resonance imaging technology, where a radio frequency electromagnetic field is created to detect and create imaging of particular part of body. MRI scanner reads the soft tissue and produces an image, but these images are not so clear and forms black area, however it best suited for imaging soft tissue. It can detect tumors in abdomen, brain or can find any blockages in vascular tissues. Most importantly they emit no radiation and hence an added advantage over CT scans. As the MRI technology continues to improve it may replace X-ray and CT scan.

A CT scan generates images of the body or bone using X-rays. In this technique patients asked to lie on table then an x-ray tube rotates around the body of patient. A detector called x- ray detector detects x-ray beams and converts it into digital signals. Which is further sent to reconstruction processor. It measures signals at a speed of 1000 times per second. CT scan is preferred for brain injury and scanning bones and test for pneumonia. It is a sensitive technique and can harm if body is exposed for longer or to a high beam of radiations.

Most of patients have some superficial knowledge about MRI and CT scan and they often think why doctors referred to a CT scan or MRI. These questions put them into dilemmas and some kind of insecurity with regards to treatment, cost of treatment and which one would be a better solution.  MRI versus CT scan will be a topic of discussion for doctors and patients at least in coming years as both diagnostic techniques have some advantages over each other.


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