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Hypotheses

This survey is intended to look at the
knowledge, or lack thereof, people have regarding CT scans and head CT scans, specifically. The survey examines knowledge level
regarding CT as a whole, its use for head ailments, and the risks surrounding it.

Raw Data
#

1) The majority of respondents will

1 Male

Female

identify a familiarity with CT scan, but a

47/31.3%
2 Below 16
2/1.3%
3 Yes
36/24%
4 Yes
76/50.7%
5 Yes

103/68.7%
16-25
26-40
135/90%
6/4%
No
114/76%
No
74/49.3%
No

significant portion of these will incorrectly define CT and the areas in which
it is used. Older respondents and those
with a medical background or STEM
background will for the most part all

have correct identification and definitions of CT.
2) The majority of respondents will
identify CT scans with head trauma, but
will not correctly identify all of the right
scans. The majority will identify it as an
important diagnostic tool for head trauma. Older respondents and those with

a medical background or STEM background will for the most part all have
correct identification and definitions of
CT. Those with a history of head injuries will also correctly identify.
3) Most respondents will be unable to
identify all of the risks associated with
CT scanning, but most will recognize
radiation as a risk. Almost all respondents will describe CT as having benefits
that outweigh the risks. Those with a
medical background, a STEM background, or a history of CT will have a
higher rate of correct identification.

41-65
6/4%

66+
1/0.7%

37/24.7% 113/75.3%
6 No CT

Didn’t Say Other

106/70.7% 11/7.3%
7 Yes
No
22/14.7%
8 Yes
85/56.7%
9 a)

33/22%

128/85.3%
No
65/43.3%
b)
c)

131/87.3% 13/8.7%
1/0.7%
10 Head
Abdomen Chest

d)
5/3.3%
Pelvic

None

140/93.3% 106/70.7% 120/80% 91/60.7% 1/0.7%
Ultra11 CT
MRI
X-ray
sound None
139/92.7% 134/89.3% 66/44% 33/22%
12 Yes
No
144/96% 6/4%
13 Sound
7/4.7%

Gamma
36/24%

14 Radiation Contrast
126/84% 41/27.3%
15 Yes
No
142/94.7% 8/5.3%

X-ray
51/34%
Bleeding
8/5.3%

Light
3/2%
Insomnia
15/10%

0/0%

Don't
know
53/35.3%
None
15/10%

HEAD CT SCAN
KNOWLEDGE
AND OPINION
SURVEY
Independent Study
Mentorship:
Spring 2016
Aaron Lassmann
ISM-7th Period

Questions
1) Male or Female?
2) Age? a) Below 16
b) 16 - 25
c) 26 – 40
d) 41 - 65
e) 66+
3) Do you have any sort of medical background?
a) Yes
b) No
4) Do you have any sort of STEM background?
a) Yes
b) No
5) Have you ever had a CT scan performed on you?
a) Yes
b) No
6) If yes, what for? (Be general)
a) Have not had a CT performed
b) Prefer not say c) [Free Answer]
7) Have you ever had a serious medical problem with your
head? (ex. trauma, concussion, stroke, tumors, etc.)
a) Yes
b) No
8) Are you familiar with CT scans?
a) Yes
b) No
9) What is a CT scan?
a) Cross-sectional images of inside of the
body
b) Recording of bodily rhythms and vitals
c) Measurement of the body’s healing abilities
d) 2-D images of the bones
10) Where are CT scans used? (Check all that apply)
a) Head
b) Abdomen
c) Chest
d) Pelvic Area e) None of these
11) Check all that may be used following a head injury or
problem. (ex. trauma, concussion, stroke, tumors, etc.)
a) CT
b) MRI
c) X-ray
d) Ultrasound
e) None of these
12) In your opinion, is CT an important diagnostic tool for
head injuries and problems?
a) Yes
b) No
13) What is the basic physics behind CT scanning?
a) Sound waves b) Gamma radiation
c) X-radiation
d) Light
e) I don’t know
14) What are some of the primary risks of CT scans?
(Check all that apply)
a) Radiation
b) Body’s ability to handle
contrast
c) Prolonged bleeding
d) Insomnia
e) None
15) Do the benefits of CT scanning outweigh any risks?
a) Yes
b) No
Correct Answers (if applicable) Are Bolded

Results
Participants
While there were no specific criteria, the participants
targeted were generally middle-class Americans of all
age ranges. A majority of respondents were female and
in the 16-25 age range. A total of 150 respondents
completed the survey.

Method
This survey was conducted through Google Forms, a
free, internet-based survey platform. The survey was
spread though social media platforms in an attempt to
get a broad array of American participants

Data

Conclusion
1) The first hypothesis looks at participants’ ability to identify the basics of CT scanning and where it is used. Only
56.7% of respondents identified a familiarity with CT scans,
narrowly matching my hypothesis. However, 87% of respondents correctly said that CT provides cross-sectional
images, proving that part of my hypothesis wrong. Additionally, a majority identified each of the correct areas of CT
scan use, but the number varied widely from 93.3% to
60.7% for head and pelvis, respectively. Only 34% identified X-radiation as the source of CT scans, so my hypothesis appears to become more accurate with more technical
aspects. Overall, I was incorrect in predicting that most respondents would be unable to identify what CT scanning is.
2) The second hypothesis looks at the ability of respondents to identify the use of CT scanning with head injuries or
problems. Over 90% of respondents in questions 10 and 11
correctly identify CT scanning with head injuries. In regards
to other scans, correct identification was lower, but still at a
very high rate for MRI. X-rays were misidentified by a majority with only 44% correctly identifying, partially confirming
my hypothesis. Overall, I was correct in that most respondents would correctly correlate CT scans and had injuries. I
was partially incorrect in my belief that they would misidentify other scans due to the high number seen with MRI.
3) The third hypothesis looks at whether respondents are
able to correctly identify the risks of CT scans and their
perception on the benefits versus the risks. 84% of respondents correctly identified radiation as a risk, but only
27.3% were able to do the same with contrast. This is likely
due to the overwhelming culturally acknowledgement of
radiation corresponding to medical scans. The low number
of respondents that correctly identified contrast as a risk
confirms my hypothesis. Additionally, almost 95% of respondents said that benefits outweighed the risks, matching
my hypothesis.
Across all questions and hypotheses those with medical or
STEM backgrounds or a history of CT scans had a higher
percentage of correct answers, with over a 100% increase
in accuracy in some cases. Overall, the data suggests that
most people have a basic understanding of CT scans, but
this quickly deteriorates in slightly more technical areas.