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What is the definition of nuclear medicine?
Modality that uses radioactive materials called radiopharmaceuticals or tracers in the study and treatment of various medical conditions and diseases.
How are radiopharmaceuticals or tracers administered?
What type of radiation do tracers emit?
Typically who are on the nuclear medicine team?
- Nuclear Medicine Physician
What are the types of nuclear medicine equipment and describe them?
- Radioactive Detectors- Gas filled or scintillation
- Gamma Camera-Primary scanner, Can be stationary or mobile
- Computer-Acquires and processes data from gamma camera
What are the five types of nuclear medicine imaging?
- Static – single image; used for lung scans, spot bone scan, thyroid image
- Whole-Body – entire body or large body
- section; bone scan or tumor/ abscess image
- Dynamic – display distribution of tracers; flow study of blood perfusion tissue
- SPECT – produces thin slices; used for
- cardiac perfusion and brain, liver, bone studies
- PET – images of blood flow or metabolic
- processes at cellular level; measures glucose metabolism in brain and detects tumors
What are the various clinical applications of nuclear medicine and describe them?
- Bone Scintigraphy (bone scan) – study of skeletal system
- -detect metastasis, stress fractures, bone injuries
- Nuclear Cardiology
- - significant portion of nuclear medicine exams
- - assess cardiac performance, evaluate myocardial perfusion, measure metabolism
- Central Nervous System Studies
- - assesses effectiveness of surgery or radiation therapy
- - evaluate stroke, transient ischemia, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease
- Endocrine System Studies
- - monitor treatment of endocrine disorders
- - thyroid studies most prevalent
- Genitourinary Studies
- -provides anatomic and functional evaluation of kidneys
- -excellent for assessment of kidney transplant
- Imaging for Infection
- Respiratory Imaging
- -radioactive aerosol used
- -evaluates pulmonary emboli, COPD, emphysema,
- asthma, lung carcinoma
- Therapeutic Nuclear Medicine
What are some key points about nuclear medicine
- Tracers emit radiation after administration but present no significant hazard.
- Requires preparation area with ventilation and shielding
- Should use gloves and lead syringe shield when administering tracers.
- Must wear radiation-monitoring devices.