What is Nuclear Medicine? Nuclear medicine imaging uses a radioisotope which is injected intravenously into the patient. A machine then uses a detector to take “images” for diagnostic examinations.
How is Nuclear Medicine performed? In a nuclear medicine procedure, a radioisotope is injected into a vein and circulates through the bloodstream. The type of radioisotope used depends on the system being evaluated. The patient usually then lies on a table surrounded with detectors on several sides for a period of time. The data is then used to create pictures of the body part under evaluation.
Examples of general nuclear medicine exams:
- Bone scan
- Hepatobiliary imaging
- Cardiac imaging
- Thyroid or parathyroid imaging
What is a PET scan? A PET/CT scan is a specific type of nuclear medicine scan. PET/CT scans are often used for the early detection of cancer, staging the extent of cancer, monitoring treatment, and evaluating patients with dementia.
How is a PET/CT scan performed? A radionuclide combined with glucose is given intravenously. The patient lies on a table and images are taken using a combination of CT images and nuclear medicine detectors. This creates 2D and 3D images of the body.
PET/CT imaging is only performed at Meridian Park Medical Center.