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Chapter Thirty Two - Computed Tomography

from Imaging

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  13 December 2022

Louis R. Caplan
Affiliation:
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre
Aishwarya Aggarwal
Affiliation:
John F. Kennedy Medical Center
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Summary

In December 1895, German physicist Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen announced that a form of radiation that he dubbed X-rays could penetrate solid substances and produce an outline of their interior contents. The use of X-rays became widespread and greatly improved physician’s diagnostic capabilities; doctors could look at broken bones, lungs, the heart, or the intestines. However, X-rays were very limited in showing the brain. The skull was radio dense and the fluid surrounding the brain made it appear as a homogenous density without any structural details [1]. The first X-ray image of the brain reported at the end of the nineteenth century was fraudulent. It was an image of a cat’s intestine filled with a mercuric compound, radiographed in a brain-shaped pan. The famous American inventor Thomas Edison attempted to image the brain. His fame was such that reporters and the general public waited outside his laboratory for two weeks in anticipation of the good news. His efforts were unrewarding [2].

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Chapter
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Stories of Stroke
Key Individuals and the Evolution of Ideas
, pp. 304 - 312
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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References

Notes and References

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