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A member asked:

Is the lumbar ct scan with dye a risky thing to do?

2 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Levine
Orthopedic Surgery 19 years experience
Not too Risky: The biggest risk would be an allergy to the dye. It is rare, centers knows the cross allergies, that is, red flags about people who are increased risk for an allergic reaction. Centers are also prepared to take appropriate in case there is an allergic reaction. There is also the risk from the radiation associated with the ct.
Dr. Mark Weston
Orthopedic Spine Surgery 31 years experience
No: Big risk is spinal fluid leak and headache under 2% routine procedure.

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CA
A 36-year-old member asked:

Is there a shot or an i.V. Involved when doing a lumbar CT scan with dye?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ralph Morgan Lewis
Family Medicine 38 years experience
CT with contrast: Before the study, an IV will be started, through which the contrast ("dye") is injected. Usually a lumbar scan is done first without contrast and then a second time with contrast to enhance structures like discs, spinal cord, nerves. They may request a blood test of your kidney function to make certain your kidneys can deal with the contrast.
Dr. Ralph Morgan Lewis
Family Medicine 38 years experience
Provided original answer
sometimes the orthopod or neurologist will inject contrast directly into the lumbar dural space for better images
Feb 15, 2012
CA
A 36-year-old member asked:

What kind of complications might happen from a lumbar CT scan without dye?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Jeremy Proctor
Family Medicine 12 years experience
Shouldn't be any: Thos is a non-invasive imaging procedure with little risk of complication. A ct scan uses x-rays taken in a spiral fashion to create an image that is 3 dimensional. A single ct scan is roughly equivalent to 200-300 chestherefor, therefore in people who are imaged hundreds of times over a number of years, there is a small risk of radiation exposure causing cancerous change in cells.
A member asked:

Is there something they will give me for anxiety when i'm doing the lumbar CT scan with dye?

2 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Bennett Werner
Cardiology 44 years experience
Usually not: A lumbar ct scan with dye is no more painful than giving a blood sample (ie there will be a needle placed in your vein). Unless you have a special phobia about such things, you should be fine without sedation.

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Last updated Mar 12, 2020

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