MRI vs CT scan, MRI CT Scan Comparision

MRI vs CT scanning techniques; which is better? This question dwells in mind of many whether which is better. The best thing to do, from a patient’s point of view, is to follow what your doctor instructs you. Your doctor is the best person to suggest you tests based on your physical condition. However, for those who still wonder which is a better test, this article will help them spot the difference. Perhaps the abstraction may also help you to know which tests would be better.

Sponsored link

MRI is the abbreviation of Magnetic resonance imaging whereas CT scan is acronym of Computed tomography scan. CT scan is a technique wherein the scanning device in the application employs x- rays which are ionizing radiation that helps in obtaining images. This technique is said to be an efficient tool for evaluating tissues that are composed of higher atomic number elements as compared to the tissues that surrounds them. These higher atomic tissues may include calcification as well as bones, fleshes that are based on carbon, bowel or blood vessels etc, within the body. Whereas, MRI or magnetic resonance technique uses RF or Radio Frequency which is non- ionizing signals utilized to obtain images. This technique used in MRI is appropriate and mostly preferred for non- calcified tissues.

Computed tomography scan may be improved by utilizing contrasting agents that holds elements with higher number of atoms as compared to the flesh surrounding the body part. Some of the highly used contrast agents in Computed tomography are as follows:

• Iodine has symbol I and atomic number 53

• Barium with symbol Ba and atomic number 56y

• Barium Sulfate with symbol BaSO4

• Gastrografin which is a blend if sodium amidotrizoate and meglumine amidotrizoate

Similar to computed tomography technique even Magnetic resonance imaging also includes use of contrast agents. Contrast agents used in MRI technique are those which have paramagnetic properties. Most contrast agents of MRI are based on (Gd) or Gadolinium, iron (Fe) or manganese (Mn).

Both the techniques Computed Tomography scan as well as Magnetic Resonance Imaging have the capacity to develop numerous two- dimensional cross sectional anatomy of tissues as well as three dimensional re-enactments. CT only utilizes X- ray attenuation in order to create a contrast in image. On the other hand, magnetic resonance imaging has several properties that can be utilized in reach to image contrast. By following different scanning parameters, contrast in tissue can be changed and improved in number of ways to determine dissimilar features.

MRI vs CT- use of planes:

Magnetic resonance imaging *————–technique is also capable or obtaining cross- section images in any kind of plane even including the oblique type planes. In recent past some computed tomography techniques could only obtain images in axial planes. These scans were initially known as CAT or Computed Axial Tomography scan. With the advancement of multi- detector computed tomography scanners, related to near- isotropic resolutions enables the machines to generate retrospective reconstruction of images in any type of plane with negligible loss of quality of the image.

Sponsored link

MRI vs CT scan pros and cons:

Benefits of MRI over CAT scan

CAT scan or Computed Axial Tomography scan utilizes x- ray to generate images. Whereas, magnetic resonance imaging utilizes magnetic field for generating images and no side effects are recorded in exposure to MRI radiation. MRI imaging provides much better details in regards with softer tissues. One of the most prominent benefits of using MRI is the ability to alter the image contrast. Insignificant changes related to radio waves as well as the magnetic field may entirely alter the image contrasts. There are several contrast settings that are used to highlight dissimilar types of tissues.

MRI also provides the facility to replace the imagining plane without the need of moving the patient undergoing the test; this is another benefit of MRI over CAT scan. Contrast agents that are used in magnetic resonance imaging technique are not based on iodine. Moreover, there are comparatively lesser records of cases that showed reaction due to MRI contrasts. MRI is said to be safer technique as compared to X-ray.

In order to detect and identify tumors, in most cases magnetic resonance imaging is used as superior to CT. Nevertheless Computed Tomography is easily available, economical, faster and mostly does not require the person to be treated with anesthesia or sedatives.

Benefits of CT scan over MRI:

Computed Tomography Scan is an efficient technique for imaging structures of bone. MRI is not suitable for some patients who obtained surgical clips, cardiac monitors etc. hence for such people CT scan is suggested. CT scan requires lesser time for entire testing as compared to MRI. MRI is not suggested for patients with claustrophobic issues, because the patients have to stay in a machine for about 20 to 45 minutes and the environment in the machine is very noisy. CT scan is cheaper as compared to magnetic resonance imaging. MRI may cost approximately $4000, where as CT scan would cost you only $1000 to $3000.

MRI vs CT scan – Application

In medical industry, magnetic resonance imaging is adopted to differentiate pathologic tissues like brain tumor from normal body tissues. CT scans and conventional X-rays usually involve ionizing radiation which may increase the chances of malignancy particularly in fetus. While CT scan gives the ability to differentiate between two structures through spatial resolution, the MRI offers comparable resolution along with much better contrast resolution. These techniques are mostly based on the intricate library sequences of pulse which are included in advanced medical magnetic resonance scanner. Each of these pulse sequences is optimized to impart contrast to the images on the basis of chemical sensitivity of magnetic resonance imaging.


Though MRI and CT scan are different from each other both are efficacious in their own rights. Apart from the differences of MRI vs CT scan techniques, there are other factors that may help you in determining which technique is better, such as cost, urgency and urgency of details. However, before you compare MRI vs CT scan to adopt of the techniques, it is crucial to ask your doctor which one is suitable for you.

Sponsored link

Tagged as: , , ,

Leave a Response