Experience. Expertise. Quality Care.
You’re in good hands at Northwest Radiology Network. Our certified PET technologists are not only experienced professionals; but also, compassionate individuals who understand the concerns involved with having a scan. They will be with you every step of the way during your visit explaining the procedure, answering questions and assisting you as needed. That’s the Northwest Radiology difference.
What is a PET/CT Scan?
A PET/CT scan is a highly accurate scan that shows organ and tissue function, blood vessels and bones. PET/CT combines positron emission tomography (PET) with computed tomography (CT) to create detailed images revealing information about the body’s structure and the cell function. PET/CT images allow radiologists to detect cancer, heart problems, brain disorders and other central nervous system disorders. Before the scan begins, a small radioactive tracer called fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) is administered through an IV. The tracer travels through the body and is absorbed by the tissues and organs that are being studied.
What to expect. Step by step.
From start to finish, the process may take one and a half to two hours, although actual time in the scanner is 30-40 minutes. You’ll need to fast for six hours prior to your appointment time. Upon arriving at Northwest Radiology, stop at the front desk to check in, complete necessary paperwork if it wasn’t completed in advance, and take a seat in our comfortable waiting area.
One of our knowledgeable technologists will escort you to a private area to review your medical history, check your blood sugar, get you started on an IV and answer any questions you may have.
Next, you will go to a “quiet room” where you will rest comfortably in a recliner and the technologist will administer the FDG tracer through the IV. You will stay in the quiet room allowing time for the tracer to circulate through your system. Depending on the type of scan you need, this will take approximately one-two hours. The technologist will provide you with a blanket and pillow for comfort, and you may choose to take a nap while you wait. For your convenience, a restroom is located a few steps from the quiet room.
When it’s time to begin your scan, you will lie down on the examination table with a pillow under your head and your arms over your head. The technologists will help position you properly and will provide a pillow under your knees. The scan takes approximately 30-40 minutes. The technologist will be monitoring you through a window in the control room. After the scan is complete, you will be helped off of the table and escorted to the exit. Your images will be reviewed and interpreted by a radiologist, and the results will be reported to your referring physician who will contact you.