Difference Between Radiography and Computed Tomography

Main difference

The main difference between X-ray and CT scan is that X-ray is used to detect breakage, cracking, and dislocation of bones while a CT scan is used for internal injuries and internal organ diagnosis. X-rays are also used for the recognition of cancer and pneumonia.

X-Ray vs CT Scan

X-ray and CT scan are used for better and accurate diagnosis of diseases, broken bones, diseases, fractures and abnormalities. Computed tomography is also known as computed tomography technology .X-ray machines are unable to detect soft tissue, muscle, and other bodily damage, which is why computerized axial tomography technology is used for this type of diagnosis. Computed tomography provides better and more accurate scan images than x-rays. In X-rays, the image formed is always 2D, but in the case of CT, the 3D image is formed. X-rays are a cheap diagnostic source, while a CT scan is an expensive technique. The X-rays do not focus on the target area, but the CT scan does focus on the target area.

Comparison chart

Bone scan computed tomography
In this type of diagnosis, x-ray machines use light or radio waves, and in the presence of these radiations, scans are taken of the affected body parts. Computed tomography, also known as computed tomography, is based on an advanced x-ray machine that provides the sharpest details of the affected part of the body, including soft tissue and muscle scans.
invented by
X-rays were invented by Wilhelm Rontgen in 1895. Computed tomography was invented by Godfrey Hounsfield and Allan Cormack in 1972.
Images Dimension
2D 3D
use to diagnose
Tumors, broken bones, fractures and pneumonia. Internal organs, soft tissues, spine, vertebrae and muscles
Easy Hard
Cheap Expensive

What are X-rays?

X-ray images are used to detect broken bones and other body abnormalities. Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen was the first man to discover X-rays in 1895. One day, Sir Wilhelm studied high-voltage discharge phenomena in a partial vacuum tube. During his study, he noticed the fluorescence of the barium platinum cyanide screen several meters away in the same room. He was confused and wonderfully surprised by the reaction. He was unknown for this reaction and after this this reaction was named as X-ray. X-ray is the most common and available technique to scan the damaged body parts. In this type of exploration, light and radio rays are used. During the X-ray, the body part is placed between the x-ray machine and the photographic film, then the radiation from the device is allowed to pass through the body and thus the scanning of the body part assists the exposed film. A specific amount of emissions is allowed to move through a particular part of the body. Precautions are taken by both the patient and the doctor.


X-ray technology is used to scan for cracked bones, cancer, pneumonia, tumors, infections, dislocations, degeneration, and bone disease .

What is a CT scan?

CT (Computed Tomography) and CAT (Computerized Axial Tomography) can take many pictures from different angles. Godfrey Hounsfield and Allan Cormack were the first who invented the CT scan in 1972. The CT machine is considered to be an advanced type of X-ray machine. A scan of the body part can also be seen on the computer. The CT scan test provides multiple images and in different directions. During the CT scan test, the patient lies on a table that slides over the scanner. Meanwhile, the machine rotates 360 angles to take multiple images of the body. The radiologist can view these images, which are also called “slices.” There is an easy test preparation that drinks 8 to 20 glasses of water, do not eat or drink anything 3 to 4 hours before the scan. The doctor also orders some blood tests. A CT scan test can take about 20 seconds or less. A CT scan is an extension of X-ray technology. The CT scan focuses on the target area.


Computerized axial tomography is used to scan soft tissues, muscles, the spine, vertebrae, blood vessels, and many internal organs.

Key differences

  1. X-rays use X-ray waves to scan the affected body part and provide a 2D image, while CT is an advanced technique that creates the three-dimensional view of the internal organ.
  2. X-rays are used for the diagnosis of bones and tumors, while CT scans are used for soft tissues and muscles.
  3. The equipment used in X-rays is simple and small, while in the case of computed tomography, more complex and sophisticated equipment is used.
  4. X-rays are readily available and inexpensive, but a CT scan is an expensive procedure .

Final Thought

The article concludes that both radiography and computed tomography are used for the diagnosis of affected body parts. Both techniques use radiation to scan X-rays are a cheap and readily available technique for detecting fractured bone and tumors, while CT is the expensive but not readily available type of scan of the body’s soft tissues.

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