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MRI or CT Scan 2 Weeks After Hitting Head?With/without contrast?

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MRI or CT Scan 2 Weeks After Hitting Head? With or without contrast?
CT Scan without contrast
CT Scan with contrast
MRI scan without contrast
MRI Scan with contrast
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Having double thoughts between picking a CT scan or MRI for my head. The scan is mainly to make sure nothing is wrong, so radiation is a factor. Its now 12 days after the hit and I'll prolly do the scan in 2 days so it will be 2 weeks after the incident. What is the best scan if you've hit your head and you're at the 2 week mark? MRI or CT? I'm leaning towards an MRI because of no radiation, but not sure if MRI without contrast would catch bleeding/swelling in the brain from head injury. Price is not a factor, weighting effectiveness/risks here. The MRI is 1.2T they use magnevist contrast, the CT is 16 slice Philips. Confused what to pick, from reading online it seems like most of the advantages of CT scans are if you get one soon after hitting your head. Here's the story.

I stayed at a penthouse and hit my head several times, guess not used to living in low attic places. I then hit my head on the rail of a back door of a car while putting in the luggage. This happened a 12 days ago. II didn't vomit or lose consciousness but I did develop balance issues the day after all this happened. I got up after few hrs of sleep and I had trouble balancing, I could still walk but with some difficulties.

The place on my forehead where I hit my head still feels slightly painful to the touch but there is no redness swelling or bump that I can see anywhere. I can also feel a line on my bone where I hit my head, which is not as pronounced on the right side and doesn't go as low as it does on the left where I hit my head. I feel pressure on the back of my head if I lay on it for long period of time. I also feel disoriented if I lay on the left side of my head. I also sometimes get a headache when I stand up/or I am up sometimes in the area where I hit my head, sometimes in the back of my head.

From looking online the only major symptom that worries me is the balance issues I developed few hours after I hit my head.

I should point out that I had a weird pressure to the back of my head even before this incident, maybe caused by bad weather/sudden weather change, it was raining a lot few days before the event. Maybe that contributed to me feeling out of it so I constantly hit my head?

Now 12 days in, most of the balance issues are gone by now, they only show up if I stand up very fast. But I still get the pain where I hit my head if I lay down. It's weird cause I hit my forehead but when I lay down properly (not on stomach) pain starts in my forehead. It's not unbearable pain. just kinda middle strength and most of the time it feels like pressure not pain.. I also get a slight twitch just below the left eye, this is just below where I hit my head on the forehead. I noticed the bags under my eyes seem to be more pronounced lately.

When sitting in a chair the pain is lessened and less frequent but when I eat it shows up again.

Maybe you can clear up what scan to pick or even if I need a scan at all. To sum it up: MRI or CT Scan 2 Weeks After Hitting Head? With or without contrast? The MRI is 1.2T they use magnevist contrast, the CT is 16 slice Philips, not sure what contrast they use.

Thank you.
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replied July 9th, 2013
Brain MRI without a contrast would be the best option by all means. By Andre Strizhak


Providing Top Neurology Services in the New York area. Excellence in treating headaches, dizziness, and head pain.
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