, Volume 33, Issue 8, pp 535-539
Date: 13 May 2003

CT scout films: Don't forget to look!

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A lateral scout view of the head is always obtained when performing head computed tomography (CT). It is common knowledge that viewing the lateral scout view may provide additional information. For a variety of reasons, however, a careful review may not be performed routinely.


To illustrate the value of the lateral scout view, we present a series of representative cases.


Six patients with clinically relevant findings on the scout view.


Most of the ancillary findings were in the upper cervical spine/neck, which is typically included on the lateral scout view.


Careful evaluation of the scout view of the head CT, including the skull and neck, may yield valuable information, which may not be visualized on the axial CT images.