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What is PET/CT?ICANL

Positron Emission Tomography (PET)/CT is a diagnostic study that produces images of the body's cellular functions (human physiology). Instead of detecting changes in the physical size or structure of internal organs, as other imaging technologies (x-ray, CT, MRI) do, the PET/CT scan assesses and measures changes in cellular function.  Since these functional changes may take place before physical changes occur, PET/CT can often provide information that enables your physician to make an earlier diagnosis of diseases or abnormalities. PET/CT is a safe and accepted method for imaging many forms of cancer including lung, colorectal, melanoma, ovarian, lymphoma and recurrent brain cancer. It can also be used to assess heart disease and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and some forms of epilepsy.  

 

PET Images The PET/CT scan procedure involves the injection of a glucose tracer.  These tracers journey through the body and collect in cells with increased metabolism.  All cells use glucose, however, diseased cells, such as cancerous cells, use it faster than healthy cells.  The PET/CT scanner produces images of the diseased tissues that have absorbed the glucose tracer. The CT component of the scan better visualizes and localizes organs to determine cancerous cells.

PET/CT scanning begins approximately 60 minutes after the injection.  You will be asked to lie comfortably on the PET/CT scan table and to remain very still in order to obtain the best quality images.  The bed of the PET/CT scanner will move slowly through the circular opening of the camera.

PET/CT imaging can potentially improve the diagnosis and treatment of various diseases, because it can detect changes in cell activity combined with anatomical imaging of the CT to localize the cancerous cells.

 

 

What can I expect during the exam?

The PET/CT scan procedure involves the injection of a glucose tracer.  These tracers journey through the body and collect in cells with increased metabolism.  All cells use glucose, however, diseased cells, such as cancerous cells, use it faster than healthy cells.  The PET/CT scanner produces images of the diseased tissues that have absorbed the glucose tracer. 

PET/CT scanning begins approximately 40-60 minutes after the injection.  You will be asked to lie comfortably on the PET/CT scan table and to remain very still in order to obtain the best quality images.  The bed of the PET/CT scanner will move slowly through the circular opening of the camera.

The imaging process should be completely pain free and may last anywhere from 15 to 120 minutes.  Please be prepared, however, to spend two to three hours at our facility from the moment you arrive until you are ready to leave.  You may leave as soon as the scan is complete.

 

How do I prepare for this exam?
  • Do not eat or chew anything after midnight.  (if appt. is 3p.m. or later, call office for specific instructions)
  • The morning of the scan, drink at least 32 oz. of plain water.
  • If your physician directs you to take medications, drink plain water to swallow them.
  • No metal on clothing and no jewelry.
  • If you are diabetic, please let us know ahead of time so we can work with your physician to determine the safest possible way for you to prepare for your exam.
  • Please limit your physical activity and do not exercise or chew gum after midnight prior to your exam.
  • After your injection of FDG, you will be seated in our private patient care room for 60 minutes.
    We will ask you to refrain from speaking during this period.
  • You may be given 10 mg of valium before your FDG injection.  Please have someone to drive you home.
  • A bladder catheter may be necessary if you have had or there is a suspicion of pelvic or abdominal disease.
 
What do I do if I need to cancel my appointment for this exam?

Test cancellation during business hours call 239-936-4068; after hours only call 239-425-4557

 
Where is this exam offered?
 
Related Topics

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Contact Us (239) 936-2316

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Radiology Regional Center - serving the diagnostic needs of Ft. Myers, Cape Coral, Lehigh, Estero, Bonita Springs, and Naples, Florida with X-Ray, MRI, CT, PET, Ultrasound, Digital Mammography, Mobile Mammography, DEXA, Breast Biopsy, Nuclear Medicine & Nuclear Cardiology, Vascular Screenings, Interventional Radiology, Varicose and Spider Vein Treatments, Aesthetic Treatments, and CT Health Screenings.