CT Scan vs. MRI: What's the Difference?

Key Difference

CT Scan and MRI both are the famous medical techniques that are used for diagnosing the injuries and look up inside the body of the patient for in-depth analysis. CT Scan and MRI are totally different techniques, and both are used for different purposes. But yet due to the use of similar kind of machinery and lack of instrumental medical knowledge, many people often get confused between these two techniques and they frequently mix up these both techniques. In the CT Scan, radio waves are used for diagnosing bone injuries, internal injuries, diagnosing chest and lung issues. On the other hand, MRI uses strong and powerful magnetic field for diagnosing the soft body tissues and deal with the analyzing of soft internal body organs and also to identify the tumors in the body as well.

Comparison Chart

CT Scan MRI
What is it? CT Scan is a medical technique that is used for diagnosing bone injuries, internal injuries and diagnosing chest, lung problems, etc. MRI is another medical technique that is used for diagnosing the tumors inside the body, diagnosing soft body tissues and internal body organs.
Time Duration CT Scan does not take much time, and it can be complete within 5 to 7 minutes. MRI techniques require more time as compare to CT Scan and are completed in a minimum of 30 minutes.
Used for It is used for diagnosing internal injuries, bone injuries, diagnosing lungs and chest issues. MRI is used for diagnosing internal organs and soft body tissues. It is also used to detect the tumors inside the body.
Side effects CT Scan as uses radioactive waves and X-rays in it, it possesses the risk of irradiation and other issues if doesn’t perform carefully or if repeatedly exposed. MRI still does not have any side effect on the patient or their body. Some allergies can be caused due to the dyes used, but not anything serious.
Abilities CT Scan possesses the mastery in deeply diagnosing internal hidden bones inside the body. MRI is versatile in nature and is used to diagnose various conditions and issues inside the body.
Abbreviation Computed Axial Tomography. Magnetic Resonance Imaging.
Cost CT Scan costs less than MRI. It ranges from $1000 to $3000. MRI is more costly as compare to CT Scan. It ranges from $1500 to $4000.
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What is CT Scan?

CT Scan stands for Computed Axial Tomography. CT Scan is the technique used for treatment and diagnosing in the medical field. CT Scan is used for examining the injuries inside the body, used to diagnose injuries in the bones, used to diagnose issues and problems in the lungs and chest. CT scan is one of the most famous and most widely used techniques that is used all around the globe for examining the body and identifying the bony injuries. CT scan uses X-rays and other radioactive rays for determining the diagnosing process. If not used carefully under the supervision of highly qualified and trained professional staff that it could cause serious damage to the patient’s health as well. CT Scan is the technique that is most preferably used in the emergency wards and rooms for quick detection of injuries after any mishap and accidents. Furthermore, it is also used to detect cancer inside the body. It is a very quick process and does not take much time as compare to various another process. The real time of CT scan operation is just 30 seconds, and the patient is set free just after the 5 minutes, as longer exposure towards the radiations could be harmful to the patient. The first successful body scan with the help of this technique was conducted on October 1st in 1971. CT scan is quite cheaper as compare to MRI and other high level examining and diagnosing technique.

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What is MRI?

MRI stands for Magnetic Resonance Imagining. MRI is another worldwide famous and modern technique that is used for diagnosing and examining the internal soft organs and soft body tissues of the patient. MRI is also widely used to detect the tumors and blockage inside the body of the patient. The best thing about the technique that gives it edge to all the rest techniques is that it does not possess any side effects and does not emit any harmful radiations that can affect the patient or examiner. Up till now no biological effect of the technique is determined. The patients suffering from the kidney or liver issues can suffer from some simple kind of allergies which happens due to the dyes used in the process. In this technique, the images of the internal body organs and tissues are generated with the help of strong magnetic field passed inside that does not possess any harmful side effects. MRI is quite time-consuming and long process as compare to CT scan and other X-ray techniques.

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CT Scan vs. MRI

  • CT scan is the technique used for diagnosing cancer and bone injuries in the body.
  • MRI is used for examining internal soft organs and body tissues.
  • CT Scan uses X-rays for diagnosing.
  • MRI uses the magnetic field for examining.
  • MRI is also used for detecting tumors inside the body.
  • CT scan is completed in 5 minutes maximum.
  • MRI takes more than 30 minutes to complete.
  • MRI doesn’t have any side effects as CT Scan.

Explanatory Video

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