What is a PET scan?
A positron emission tomography (PET) scan is an imaging test that is used to observe how your organs and tissues are functioning. By evaluating changes in the body at a cellular level, we can detect a wide variety of cancers and brain disorders. It uses a radioactive drug (also known as a tracer or radiotracer), a specialized camera, and a powerful computer to capture this activity. Our esteemed team of radiologists of Imaging at Valley View in Glenwood Springs, Colorado is pleased to offer PET scans to patients who are searching for answers to their health-related issues.
Why is it used?
A PET scan is used to detect cancer or abnormal tissue and determine if cancer has spread. It is also used to evaluate brain abnormalities, such as memory loss and seizures. Lastly, it can be helpful in determining the effectiveness of treatment or medication.
How do I prepare?
Patients are encouraged to wear loose-fitting clothing and to leave all metal jewelry and/or accessories at home. A hospital gown will be provided, if necessary for your exam. Typically, most patients will be asked to not eat or drink for several hours prior to their exam. It's also important to let our office know if you are pregnant, a diabetic, or on any medications.
At the start of your procedure, one of our highly trained technicians will inject you with a radiotracer and once the solution has properly distributed throughout your body after about 60 – 90 minutes, we will prepare you for the imaging portion of your exam. You will lie down on a treatment table that will slowly slide you into the PET machine. This process will typically take about 45 minutes to complete as one of our radiologists views the images and measurements of your internal organs and tissues to detect any signs of cancer.
Benefits and risks?
There is little to no risk of undergoing a PET scan. This test is an effective tool in evaluating any changes or abnormalities in the function of your body, which enables us to catch diseases (cancers) and health concerns so you can get the treatment you need.
Schedule your exam
If you suspect any health concerns and think a PET scan may provide the answers you've been looking for or have been referred to our office by your primary care provider, don't hesitate to call Imaging at Valley View in Glenwood Springs, Colorado today to schedule your exam. A PET scan can help save your life, and our fellowship-trained radiologists at Valley View are here to serve you.