Nuclear medicine imaging uses trace amounts of radioactive material to identify many medical conditions in their early stages, including cancer, heart disease, gastrointestinal diseases, endocrine disorders, neurological conditions and more.
How a Nuclear Medicine Exam is Performed
Depending on the type of nuclear medicine exam you need, a radiotracer will be either injected into the body, swallowed or inhaled as a gas. It eventually accumulates in the organ or area of the body being examined.
After getting the radioactive substance, you may have pictures taken right away or may have to wait several hours or days to allow the radioactive molecules to travel throughout the body. During the exam, you will be positioned on a special table with a camera placed over your body. The Nuclear Medicine technologist who will perform the test may not be inside the room with you during the entire exam, but you will be able to communicate with him or her throughout.
Preparing for your Nuclear Medicine Exam
- You will be asked to arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment to register for your exam. A nuclear medicine scan can take from a few minutes to several hours or days to complete.
- Wear comfortable clothes that are easy to change as you may be asked to wear a gown for the procedure.
- You may be asked to remove personal items such as jewelry, eyeglasses, keys, phones and other metal objects that may interfere with the test.
- Results are normally available to your physician in 24-48 hours.
Here are some of the Nuclear Medicine services we offer.
- Bone scan
- Gastric emptying
- Gallbladder scan
- Renal function
- Nuclear stress test
- Heart function assessment
- Thyroid scans