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Indiana Regional PET
 

Indiana Regional PET Diagnostic Imagaing is located in Merriville, IN. Our State-of-the-Art Equipment allows us to specialize in CT and PET/CT scans.

 
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Patient Services
 


 
PET/CT
 

 

What is a PET/CT Scan?

The PET scan is a unique type of imaging test that helps doctors see how the organs and tissues inside your body are actually functioning.  The test involves injecting a very small dose of radioactive chemical, called a radiotracer, into the vein of your arm.  The tracer travels through the body and is absorbed by the organs and tissues being studied.  Next, you will be asked to lie down on a flat examination table that is moved into the center of a PET scanner, a doughnut-like shaped machine.  This machine detects and records the energy give off by the tracer substance and, with the aid of a computer, this energy is converted into 3-Dimensional pictures.

A PET scan detects changes in cellular function – how cells are utilizing nutrients like sugar and oxygen.  Areas with a high degree of metabolic activity have a greater chance of being cancerous.

Combining PET and CT into one exam gives doctors crucial pieces of information to help them prescribe the best course of treatment for their patients.  A tumor evident with CT can be confirmed as either malignant or benign with PET, and physicians can then use these fused images to target more effective therapies.

 

Benefits of a PET/CT Scan.

Because PET/CT allows study of body function, it can help physicians detect alterations in biochemical processes that suggest disease before changes in anatomy are apparent on a CT scan (in some cases up to 6 months earlier).

Because the radioactivity is very short-lived, your radtion exposure is extremely low.  The substance amount is so small that it does not affect the normal processes of the body.

Risks of a PET/CT Scan

The radioactive substance may expose the fetus of patients who are pregnant or the infants of women who are breastfeeding to the radiation.  The risk to the fetus or infant should be considered related to the information gain from the potential result of the PET/CT examination.

Preparation

No food or drink (EXCEPT WATER) should be consumed 6 hours prior to the test.  You should drink plenty of water.  You should also not have candy, gum, or sweetened drinks 6 hours prior to the exam.  Diabetics will be given a special protocol.  It is important to follow these instructions to ensure the most accurate diagnostic results.

You will be asked to change into a gown or scrubs for most procedures.  You may be asked to remove hairpins, jewelry, eyeglasses, hearing aids, and any removable dental work that could obsure the images. 

 

 
     
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