For centuries, researchers have tried to understand what our control center looks like, what happens inside and how it works. Imaging techniques are of vital importance to basic research since they allow scientists to see inside the body. They are also an integral part of the diagnostic process. There are several ways to examine the brain’s structure. Computed tomography (CT) is an imaging procedure that uses x-rays, which are detected via a scanner as they pass through the patient’s brain. Since the radiation is differentially absorbed, specific structures of the brain can be distinguished, allowing physicians to view bones of the skull, brain tissue, membranes, and blood vessels. The benefit of this technique: A CT scan doesn’t require long preparation time, making it quick and thus an essential tool in emergency departments.
Having said that, CT scans are relatively poor at identifying minor injuries or changes, making magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) the better choice. MRI scans are detailed images that can detect even minor structural variations.
Although experts know what a brain looks like, how does it actually work? Our brain collects all kinds of information, sensations, and impressions: we see a flower, smell freshly baked bread, and make a fist - these processes activate specific parts of the brain and ensure that it consumes energy in these areas.