Computed tomography allows cross-sectional imaging of anthropological as well as clinical subjects. Recently, technical innovations have made three-dimensional reconstruction of these images feasible. We performed two-dimensional and three-dimensional computed tomography of a Late Period Egyptian mummy to reexamine findings seen on previous radiographic studies and to evaluate the usefulness of these techniques in paleopathology.
Two-dimensional images provided excellent anatomic detail. There was graphic depiction of the mummification process that corroborated information previously obtained from Egyptological studies. Three-dimensional reconstruction provided images of facial features as if the mummy had been unwrapped.
Three-dimensional computed tomography is a useful method of nondestructively evaluating paleopathological remains, and it may yield information not obtainable by any other means.