Radiology – Nuclear Medicine and PET/CT
Nuclear medicine is a division of radiology which uses small doses of radioactive material in specialized studies and therapies to diagnose and treat diseases and conditions including a variety of cancers and thyroid illnesses.
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Nuclear Medicine and PET/CT
Our nuclear medicine team includes highly trained technologists and board-certified, subspecialty-trained radiologists who strive to give the best personal care to each patient. We also are dedicated to excellence in education, new technologies and research.
Nuclear medicine is vital to the diagnosis and treatment of many diseases and conditions. For example, it is used to look at the heart, lungs, bones, liver and other major body areas. It is also used to treat conditions such as thyroid illnesses, liver cancer and prostate cancer that involve the bones.
Our nuclear medicine service also takes part in research. As part of the IDEAS clinical trial, we are helping find new ways to diagnose and treat dementia. IDEAS is sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association. It is managed by the American College of Radiology (ACR) and American College of Radiology Imaging Network (ACRIN).
When you schedule your test or treatment, you will get instructions for how to prepare. Be sure to follow them carefully. If you miss a step we may need to reschedule your test.
Some nuclear medicine tests are complex and require extra preparation. You will have an office visit with a specialist who will explain the steps and help you prepare. This will vary according to the type of treatment. Patients are typically provided these instructions from the clinic that is scheduling the treatment.
Please go to the Nuclear Medicine Clinic for your study.
After you receive the tracer, you may have to wait a while before the images are made. This is because the tracer takes time to circulate. The wait time varies with the type of nuclear medicine scan. We will let you know the timing of your scan when you schedule the procedure.
For the PET/CT
The machine for these tests is similar to a CT scanner. Patients typically lie on their backs on a table for this exam. Your technologist will be able to talk with you throughout the exam. He or she can see, hear and address any question or concern you may have. These exams usually take about 30 minutes.
The radiologist will analyze the images and send a report to your doctor. This usually happens within 48 hours. Your doctor will then discuss the results with you.