CT Scan of the Internal Auditory Canal

A computed tomography scan (CT or CAT) of the internal auditory canal, also called cross-sectional imaging, allows the radiologist to look at different levels, or slices, of the skull bones leading from the ear using a rotating X-ray beam. In looking at these slices, the radiologist is able to assess skull bones for injury, infection, fluid levels and abnormalities. Our team of expert physicians, nurses and technologists is led by Barry Pressman, MD, chief, Neuroradiology and Head and Neck Radiology.

Before Arriving for Your Procedure

  • Please leave your jewelry and valuables at home.
  • Although we do not anticipate any delay in your scheduled appointment, we recommend that you bring a book, a magazine or a music player to help pass any time you may have to wait.
  • If your doctor gave you an order, please bring it with you.
  • Directions and parking information

After Arriving

  • A radiology nurse or technologist will ask you a few questions regarding your medical history.

During Your Procedure

  • If contrast dye is being used, it will be injected through your IV.
  • During the injection, you may experience a warm sensation all over your body and a metal taste in your mouth. This is normal.
  • If you experience any itching, sneezing, nasal congestion, scratchy throat or swelling of your face, please notify the technologist immediately.
  • This procedure is done in two positions.
  • For both positions, the head is positioned in a holder, and the patient is required to hold very still.
  • For the first position, patients lie on their backs with arms at the sides.
  • For the second position, the patient lies on their stomach with the head resting on the chin. Arms are positioned at the sides.
  • Only the patient's head is covered by the scanner, and the scanner is open at the back and the front, allowing the patient to see out.
  • This procedure usually takes approximately 30 minutes.

After Your Procedure

  • There are no restrictions placed on you after this procedure. You may eat or drive as normal.
  • If you received an injection of contrast dye, you should drink six to eight glasses of water to flush it out of your system.
  • Your study will be read by an imaging physician who specializes in the interpretation of CT scans. The results will be sent to your physician, usually within 48 hours.
  • Your physician will discuss these results with you and explain what they mean in relation to your health.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 310-423-8000.

The S. Mark Taper Foundation Imaging Center provides a full range of advanced imaging, both radiology and cardiology, as well as interventional radiology and interventional tumor (oncology) treatments to the greater Los Angeles area, including Beverly Hills, Encino, Mid-Cities, Sherman Oaks, Santa Monica, Silver Lake, Studio City, Toluca Lake and West Hollywood.