What is hypoattenuation?
Credit: Tom Page CC-BY-SA 2.0
Q:

What is hypoattenuation?

A:

Quick Answer

Attenuation refers to how dense a part of the body appears relative to other body parts on a CT scan or X-ray, according to MedPix; while hypoattenuation means lower density, hyperattenuation refers to higher density. Attenuation is used to compare and contrast the density of the area with that of other body parts, to diagnose such things as tumors, lesions and strokes.

  Know More

Full Answer

Hypoattenuated, or low-density, areas appear darker on CT scans than hyperattenuated, or high-density, areas. The most dense body parts, such as bone, appear the brightest. As stated on MedPix, blood clots and tumors in the brain appear whiter than brain matter. Areas of the brain affected by strokes appear hypoattenuated, or darker, than the brain around the affected area, and hypoattenuating brain tissue is an early sign of stroke, according to Radiology Assistant. According to the American Heart Association, finding areas of hypoattenuation on a CT scan soon after a stroke can help determine appropriate treatment, but a lack of hypoattenuation does not rule out brain tissue damaged by a stroke. CT scans are readily available in hospitals at all hours, states Radiology Assistant, and these scans are the best tools for diagnosing a stroke within the first 24 hours.

Learn more about Diagnostics & Imaging

Related Questions

  • Q:

    How do you prepare for an X-ray?

    A:

    An individual prepares for an X-ray by removing clothing from the part of the body being X-rayed, as well as taking off eyeglasses, jewelry and accessories with metal objects that may appear in the X-ray, according to the Mayo Clinic. The patient may also be given a contrasting medium.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are precancerous cells?

    A:

    Precancerous cells, or premalignant cells, refer to abnormal cells that can transform into cancerous cells; however, they are not invasive, meaning they don’t spread to other body parts, explains About.com. In most cases, precancerous cells remain abnormal but do not develop into cancer.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How is a CAT scan done?

    A:

    During a CT scan, a patient lies on a table and is pushed through the gantry, the large hole in the middle of the machine, in a gentle manner, according to Mayo Clinic. The gantry rotates around the patient as it scans the body, and the machine makes intermittent noises.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you know what type of lung infection you have?

    A:

    Diagnosing lung infections may require testing such as blood tests, bronchoscopy, lung biopsy or a CT scan, according to WebMD. Blood cultures may determine the presence of bacteria that causes pneumonia or influenza. Additional tests can show the amount of oxygen in the blood and sample mucus from the windpipe.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore