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A bone scan is an imaging test used to help diagnose problems with your bones. It safely uses a very small amount of a radioactive drug called a radiopharmaceutical. It has also been referred to as a “dye,” but it doesn’t stain the tissue. Specifically, a bone scan is done to reveal problems with bone metabolism.
A bone scan helps find cancer that has started in or spread to the bones. It can also help monitor how well treatment is working for cancer in the bone. How does a bone scan work? A bone scan is a nuclear medicine test. This means that the procedure uses a very small amount of a radioactive substance, called a tracer. The tracer is injected into a vein.
Then you wait for the tracer to travel through your body and bind to your bones. That can take 2 to 4 hours. Your doctor might order a scan before your body absorbs the tracer for comparison, especially if you could have a bone infection. If you’re having two scans, the first will happen right after the injection.
Whole Body Bone Scan - procedure is most commonly ordered to detect areas of abnormal bone growth due to fractures, tumors, infection, or other bone diseases.
A bone scan test is a perfectly safe diagnostic procedure to undergo. Some people express concerns over the possible threats posed due to a radioactive element injected in the body. However, these fears are unfounded, as the level of radioactive element is miniscule, making this a completely harmless procedure.
A bone scan is a type of nuclear radiology procedure. This means that a tiny amount of a radioactive substance is used during the procedure to assist in the examination of the bones. The radioactive substance, called a radionuclide, or tracer, will collect within the bone tissue at spots of abnormal physical and chemical change.
A technetium injection contained in a shielded syringeTechnetium-99m is a metastable nuclear isomer of technetium-99 (itself an isotope of technetium), symbolized as 99mTc, that is used in tens of millions of medical diagnostic procedures annually, making it the most commonly used medical radioisotope. Technetium-99m is used as a radioactive tracer and can be detected in the body by medical equipment (gamma cameras). It is well suited to the role, because it emits readily detectable gamma rays with a photon energy of 140 keV (these 8.8 pm photons are about the same wavelength as emitted by conventional X-ray diagnostic equipment) and its half-life for gamma emission is 6.0058 hours (meaning 93.7% of it decays to 99Tc in 24 hours). The relatively "short" physical half-life of the isotope and its biological half-life of 1 day (in terms of human activity and metabolism) allows for scanning procedures which collect data rapidly but keep total patient radiation exposure low. The same characteristics make the isotope suitable only for diagnostic but never therapeutic use. Technetium-99m was discovered as a product of cyclotron bombardment of molybdenum.
The indium white blood cell scan, also called "indium leukocyte imaging", "indium-111 scan", or simply "indium scan", is a nuclear medicine procedure in which white blood cells (mostly neutrophils) are removed from the patient, tagged with the radioisotope Indium-111, and then injected intravenously into the patient. The tagged leukocytes subsequently localize to areas of relatively new infection. The study is particularly helpful in differentiating conditions such as osteomyelitis from decubitus ulcers for assessment of route and duration of antibiotic therapy. In imaging of infections, the gallium scan has a sensitivity advantage over the indium white blood cell scan in imaging osteomyelitis (bone infection) of the spine, lung infections and inflammation, and in detecting chronic infections. In part, this is because gallium binds to neutrophil membranes, even after neutrophil death, whereas localization of neutrophils labeled with indium requires them to be in relatively good functional order. However, indium leukocyte imaging is better at localizing acute (i.e.
A bone scan or bone scintigraphy is a nuclear medicine imaging technique of the bone. It can help diagnose a number of bone conditions, including cancer of the bone or metastasis, location of bone inflammation and fractures (that may not be visible in traditional X-ray images), and bone infection. Nuclear medicine provides functional imaging and allows visualisation of bone metabolism or bone remodeling, which most other imaging techniques (such as X-ray computed tomography, CT) cannot. Bone scintigraphy competes with positron emission tomography (PET) for imaging of abnormal metabolism in bones, but is considerably less expensive. Bone scintigraphy has higher sensitivity but lower specificity than CT or MRI for diagnosis of scaphoid fractures following negative plain radiography.