CT gastrography (protocol)

Last revised by Andrew Murphy on 23 Mar 2023

Computed tomographic (CT) gastrography, also called virtual gastroscopy (VG), is a noninvasive procedure for the detection of gastric abnormalities.

  • rapid and noninvasive exam
  • offers information about local tumor invasion, lymph node and distant metastasis in cases of gastric cancer
  • early detection of gastric carcinoma
  • to examine gastric abnormalities, e.g. hiatus hernia, polyps and ulcers
  • post-surgical assessment of the stomach
  • CT gastrography and volumetry are used to assess the volume of the gastric pouch after bariatric surgery 4
  • patient preparation, fasting at least 8 hours before the exam
  • bowel distension, optimal gastric distention is a fundamental prerequisite for CT gastrography data evaluation; collapsed gastric wall may mimic disease or obscure underlying pathology
  • negative oral contrast medium with effervescent granules is effective for optimal gastric distension
  • CT scanning is ideally performed on a multi-detector computed tomography (MDCT) with a thin collimation
  • data interpretation with the use of two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) displays for proper evaluation

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