Positron Emission Tomography / Computed Tomography
A PET/CT scan is a powerful diagnostic test that combines the metabolic activity of a Positron Emission Tomography (PET) exam with the anatomical images from a CT scan. This combination has a significant impact on the diagnosis and treatment of disease.
A CT Scan is a non-invasive way to see inside your body and provides diagnostic information for your physician. It is important to note that the CT exam performed as part of a PET/CT study is limited and usually does not replace a regular CT exam with oral or IV contrast.
The PET scan pinpoints abnormally elevated metabolic activity in cells, and the CT exam provides an anatomical reference for the PET findings. When these two scans are fused together (PET/CT), the exact location of the abnormality can be pinpointed which in turn facilitate treatment.
Why do I need this exam?
A PET/CT exam aids in the development and management of your therapy and post treatment monitoring. Your PET/CT exam results may have a major impact on the treatment plan chosen by your physician.
What makes PET/CT at STRIC advanced?
STRIC offers Time of Flight Technology resulting in:
- Improved lesion detection
- Improved diagnostic quality for larger patients
- Fast scan times
What will I experience during the exam?
- Your technologist will greet you, obtain a brief history, explain the test and answer your questions
- Blood sugar levels will be taken and if within acceptable limits the imaging agent (FDG) will be administered through an IV.
- Next, you will rest quietly for 1 hour to allow the FDG to distribute throughout the body.
- After the resting period, you will be escorted into the exam room and assisted onto the PET/CT exam table. The scan will last approximately 30 minutes. It is important to lie still during the exam to acquire diagnostic images.
- Upon completion of your exam, if you have no other procedures scheduled, you may resume your normal daily activities.
Preparation for Exam
- Do not eat or drink anything except water for 6 hours before your exam because it may interfere with the results; do not even chew gum.
- Medications that require food should be taken after your exam is complete. Medications requiring water only may be taken at any time.
- If you are diabetic, please let us know ahead of time so we can work with your physician to determine the safest way to prepare for your exam.
- Avoid strenuous physical exercise for 24-48 hours prior to the study.
- If you feel feverish, please call this to our attention.
- In addition, please let us know if you may be pregnant or are currently breastfeeding.