Through small amounts of radioactive material, Nuclear Medicine can help diagnose and treat a wide variety of diseases and conditions, such as cancer, gallbladder disease, heart disease, Coronary Artery Disease, arthritis, and infection. Because only tiny amounts of short-lived radioactive materials are used, it is a safe and effective medical procedure. The procedure carries about the same risk as a common x-ray.
You also have the added comfort of knowing that, at Reno Diagnostic Centers, we adhere to strict safety standards.
There are four basic steps involved in this procedure:
- You are given a radioactive isotope (compound called a radiopharmaceutical). Depending on the body part to be examined, the isotope is injected, swallowed or inhaled.
- The isotope travels through your body giving off energy in the form of gamma rays, which shows the location of the isotope in your body.
- The gamma cameras are tools used to take pictures and to measure the organ functioning. A computer then processes the information to produce images of your body.
- These images are then studied and interpreted by a radiologist and a report is sent to your physician. The information acquired in a nuclear medicine study is combined with the results of general x-rays or other tests that you have received, in order to obtain a comprehensive analysis of your condition.