Indications to the Use of Computed Tomography in Thoracic Pathologies

  • Francesco Lavra
  • Luca SabaEmail author


During the past decades, improvement in computed tomography (CT) technology and post-processing techniques have favoured its wide use in the clinical practice.

Nowadays, CT does not only provide a mere anatomical assessment but is also capable to give information regarding the chemical composition, as well as the blood flow of the scanned tissue. The rapid coverage of large anatomic volumes and its high spatial and temporal resolution also make CT particularly suitable in the assessment of criticaly ill patients. Moreover, CT allows a detailed assessment of lung parenchyma, interstitium, and airways, as well as the thoracic vasculature and coronary arteries. Because of these technical and diagnostic characteristics CT has gained a crucial role in the assessment of thoracic pathologies.

Given the risk associated with radiation exposure and contrast media administration, it is of paramount importance to appropriately use CT in the clinical situations in which this technique has the proper diagnostic yield.

The purpose of this chapter is to explain the clinical indication of CT in thoracic pathologies to establish the appropriateness criteria for use of this technique in standard diagnostic care.


Computed tomography Thoracic pathology Anatomical assessment Neoplastic disease Vascular disease Lung disease 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of RadiologyAzienda Ospedaliero Universitaria (A.O.U.)CagliariItaly

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