Frequently Asked Questions

 

CT

What if I am a diabetic?
If you are diabetic and take medication to control your diabetes please call at least a few days before your exam you may need to take special steps in order to complete your exam.

What if I am on dialysis?
If you are currently on dialysis your CT exam needs to be done in coordination with your dialysis. When you make your appointment, please inform the receptionits you that are on dialysis so that they will schedule your exam accordingly.

 

MRI, OPEN MRI

What happens to my jewelry and electronics?
Before your exam you are given a locker for your jewelry and electronics. You may notbring anything electronic or metal near the MRI machine. This includes cell phones, MP3 players, keys, credit cards, jewelry, and much more. If any of these are brought near the MRI machine they may be permanently damaged.

What if I have a pacemaker?
Unfortunately if you have a pacemaker you cannot have an MRI scan.

What if I have metal in my body?
If you have metal which cannot be removed, please inform a receptionist before the date of your scan. Typically things such as braces and surgical staples do not affect the scan, but other things such as metal shrapnal may cause a problem.

What if I am pregnant?
While MRI poses no known health risks, as a precautionary measure it is recommended that you wait until after the pregnancy.

 

PET CT

What is PET?
PET is a camera that produces powerful images of the human body’s biological functions and reveals the mysteries of health and disease.

What can PET tell me about cancer?
The PET scan shows a chain of lymph node tumors in the neck, chest, and abdomen. Why are these tumors so visible? The patient is injected with a glucose tracer. Although glucose is used by all cells, more glucose is used by cells with increased metaolism. Because cancer cells are highly metabolic and use more glucose than neighboring cells, they are easily seen on the PET scan.The high glucose metabolism of these Hodgkin’s Lymphoma lesions indicates that they are malignant. Armed with this knowledge, the physician is able to determine the best method for treatment.After chemotherapy, a PET scan proves that the cancer treatment has been effective. A lesion is found on a chest x-ray, and a PET scan is performed to see if it is benign or malignant. The PET scan reveals that the lesion is malignant and also shows that metastases have spread to the right lung. PET can follow the course of the cancer through the body and accurately show the extent of the disease.

What can PET tell me about heart disease?
PET is the gold standard to determine teh viability of heart tissue for revasculariztion. PET is the most accurate test to reveal coronary artery disease or rule out its presence. The PET images show inadequate blood flow to the heart during stress undetected by other non-invasive cardiac tests.

What can PET tell me about brain disorders?
PET images of the brain will show if you have Parkinson’s disease. A labeled amino aid called F-DOPA is used with PET to see if your brain has a deficiency in dopamine synthesis. If it doesn’t, then you do not suffer from Parkinson’s.

PET scans show a very consistent diagnostic pattern for Alzheimer’s disease, where certain regions of the brain have decreased metabolism early in the disease. In fact, this pattern often can be recognized several years before a physician is able to confirm the diagnosis and is also used to differentiate Alzheimr’s from other confounding types of dementia or depression.

PET images of the brain identify regions of reduced glucose metabolism, pinpointing the epileptogenic tissue. Surgical techniques are now available to successfully remove the tissue, leading to a definitive cure of the seizure disorder in 80% of these children.

For more information please visit: www.petscan.org

 

Ultrasound

How Long is my scan?
Scans generally take about 20 minutes to an hour, depending on what part of the body you are having scanned. For a specific list if times and prep, please see Preparing for your Ultrasound.

 

Why should I have a bone densitometry exam?

You should have a bone densitometry exam if you have:

    • Family history of osteoporosis
    • Early menopause or menopause caused by surgery
    • Women past menopause who are unsure about starting or stopping hormone replacement therapy
    • A diet low in dairy products and other calcium sources.
    • Smoking, heavy drinking or lack of exercise.