PET/CT scanning is performed after injecting radio-labeled sugar (FDG) into an arm vein. After waiting about an hour to allow the sugar to circulate, the scan is started. Since cancerous cells are metabolically more active than normal cells, and therefore use more sugar for energy, they appear as “hot-spots” relative to normal cells. This information, fused with the anatomical CT information, pinpoints the exact location of the abnormality.
PET/CT leads to improved diagnostic confidence and can reduce the need for biopsies and unnecessary surgeries. Diagnoses can be made earlier, with greater accuracy in staging and localization, with more precise treatment and better patient monitoring. Finally, overall patient comfort is increased due to shorter scan times.
The following high protein, low carbohydrate diet must be followed the entire day prior to your test.
Foods that MAY be consumed:
Plain Meats: Steak, Chicken, Turkey, Fish (No Breading), Eggs, Bacon, Sausage.
Green leafy vegetables: Broccoli, Green Beans, Spinach, lettuce and asparagus.
You may use Olive Oil, Mayonnaise, butter, salt and pepper.
Foods that MAY NOT be consumed before your test:
Breads, rice, potato, pasta, cereal, fruit, fruit juices, milk, any products containing caffeine or sugar. No sugar free products, coffee, tea, soda, beer, wine or alcoholic beverages.
Drink water with every meal the day before the test. Three to four glasses of water should be consumed the day of the test. DO NOT DRINK LIQUIDS THROUGH A STRAW.
NO EXERCISE 48 HOURS PRIOR TO THE TEST.
FAST 6-8 HOURS BEFORE YOUR APPOINTMENT, PLEASE CONTINUE DRINKING WATER
You may continue to take medication with water. Please advise us if you are on any prednisone or antibiotics.
Arrive on time for the PET/CT procedure.
Bring the following:
Current insurance card, written Pet/CT order from your physician(prescription).
Films and reports from any previous diagnostic imaging procedures including X-rays, CT, MRI and any prior Pet/Ct scans.
Wear warm loose comfortable clothing, no metal such as zippers, buttons, snaps or jewelry should be worn.
Plan to spend 2 to 2 ½ hours at Medical Arts Radiology. Exam times and procedures may vary with each patient.
You will receive an intravenous (IV) injection of the radioactive substance.
The radioactive substance will then take approximately 30 to 90 minutes to travel through your body and be absorbed by the tissue under study. During this time, you will be asked to rest quietly and avoid significant movement or talking, which may alter the localization of the administered substance.
You will be positioned on the PET scanner table and asked to lie still during your exam. Scanning takes 30 to 45 minutes.
Some patients who are being evaluated for heart disease may undergo a stress test in which PET scans are obtained while they are at rest, and again after undergoing the administration of a pharmaceutical to alter the blood flow to the heart.
Usually, there are no restrictions on daily routine after the test. You should drink plenty of fluids to flush the radioactive substance from your body.
You can expect to be at Medical Arts for approximately two hours.