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nurse holding up a chest xray

X-Ray vs. CT Scan: What's the Difference?

Advanced Imaging Services

You may require advanced imaging services at some point, whether coming in for a routine check-up or if you have sustained a sports injury. You might not know the differences between x-rays and CT scans; let's take a look!

What Is an X-Ray?

An x-ray is a type of high-energy radiation that passes through the body, capturing images of the inside of the body on film. X-rays often diagnose problems with bones and organs, such as broken bones or pneumonia.

What Is a CT Scan?

A CT scan (also called computed tomography or CAT scan) is an imaging test that uses special x-ray equipment to create detailed pictures, or slices, of the inside of the body. A CT scan can examine any body part, such as the head, chest, pelvis, or abdomen.

What's the Difference Between X-Rays and CT Scans?

The main difference between x-rays and CT scans is the detail each test can provide. X-rays produce two-dimensional (2D) images, while CT scans create three-dimensional (3D) images.

CT scans are more detailed than x-rays because they take multiple pictures at different angles and combine them to create a three-dimensional image. This image can be viewed from any angle, providing more information than a two-dimensional x-ray image.

What Does an X-Ray Diagnose and Assess?

A variety of problems can be diagnosed and assessed with X-rays, including:

What Does a CT Scan Diagnose and Assess?

CT scans can be used to diagnose and evaluate a wide range of conditions, including:

  • Blood clots
  • Brain injuries
  • Cancer
  • Internal bleeding
  • Lung problems
  • Spinal cord injuries

Types of X-Rays and CT Scans

Different types of x-rays and CT scans are used to assess other parts of the body or look for specific problems. Some common types of x-rays and CT scans include:


  • Bone x-rays are used to look for fractures or other problems.
  • Chest x-rays assess the lungs for pneumonia, cystic fibrosis, or other chronic lung, heart, or chest conditions.
  • Mammogram x-rays are used to assess the breasts for cancer.
  • Angiography x-rays assess the arteries for blockages or other problems.
  • Fluoroscopies use real-time imaging to evaluate the digestive system for issues such as ulcers or blockages.

CT Scans:

  • Brain CT scans are used to assess the brain for injuries or tumors.
  • Chest CT scans assess the lungs for pneumonia or other problems.
  • Abdominal CT scans evaluate the abdomen for issues such as liver disease or pancreatitis.
  • Spinal Cord CT scans assess the spinal cord for injuries or tumors.

Which Test is Right for Me?

X-rays and CT scans are essential tools to help your healthcare provider diagnose and treat various problems. If you need an x-ray or CT scan, ask your healthcare provider which type of test is right for you.

Your doctor will order the test that is best for your needs. Both x-rays and CT scans are painless and quick procedures, so you don't need to worry about which one is right for you.

Excellence in Medical Services

At Superior Urgent Care, we offer both x-ray and CT scan services. We are dedicated to excellence in medical care, and our experienced staff will ensure that you receive the best possible care.

You can check in online and wait in the comfort of your home rather than in the lobby. We also offer TeleHealth visits for individuals who prefer virtual visits. Lastly, we understand the costs of medical treatments, and our team works hard to ensure you get the services you need.

To learn more about our x-ray and CT scan services and schedule an appointment, contact us online or call (817) 567-2926 today!