A tradition of Excellence in Patient Care

 

WHOLE BODY PET-CT SCAN

Introduction:

PET and CT are both standard imaging tools that physicians use to pinpoint disease states in the body. The PET works by creating images of the biological functions of the body to reveal disease states. Prior to the exam, patients receive an injection of a tiny amount of radioactive tracer, which emits signals as it travels through the body. Our scans utilize a positron-emitting form of glucose, which allows mapping of metabolism. Cancers use more glucose than normal tissue. The Computed Tomography aspect of the scanner adds an anatomical basis for localizing where the glucose uptake has occurred.

Preparation:

- Do not eat or drink anything at least two hours prior to the exam.
- On the day of your exam, please go directly to the 3310 Richmond location. Please be sure to bring the signed order from your physician requesting the examination, and your insurance cards as well.
- You should wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing for your exam. Metal objects can affect the image, so avoid clothing with zippers and snaps.


Precautions:

Please notify the technologist if you are diabetic; it is important that your blood glucose level be less than 200.


Your PET/CT exam:

- Prior to your exam, you will be asked to sign an informed consent form.
- The technologist will measure your glucose level with a finger prick.
- The technologist will inject the radioactive isotope into a vein or venous catheter.
- You will then be asked to rest in a quiet room for at least 45 minutes. This allows the FDG glucose to circulate in the body. It is very important that you refrain from moving and talking since any effort will increase the local rate of metabolism and cause potential artifacts. You will be asked to empty your bladder prior to scanning.
- The technologist begins by positioning the patient on the CT table. As the study proceeds, the table will move slowly into the CT scanner. The CT portion of the scan is first, followed by the PET portion.
- The exam will take 20 minutes to complete.
- After the exam a report, CD with images and color images will be delivered to your physician, generally within 24 hours.