What is PET/CT scan?
A PET/CT scan is an examination made up of two parts, both performed at the same time using the same machine.
PET stands for Positron Emission Tomography. This is used to show areas of the body with increased metabolic activity. A CT scan (computed tomography) makes detailed images of the inside of your body.
By putting these two types of images together, doctors can see whether an area with high metabolic activity is significant. This is often used to monitor the effect of treatment of a particular disease.
What happens during a PET/CT scan?
You may need to fast for a time before your scan takes place. When you attend for you scan, you will need to have an injection of a radioactive isotope. This allows areas of metabolic activity to show up more clearly on the PET scan. You will then need to rest quietly for a period of time before the scan can take place.
For the scan itself, you will lie down on a flat bed which will be moved into the scanner. The scan itself usually takes between 30 and 40 minutes, and your total appointment is likely to be up to two hours long.
You will be exposed to some radiation during your scan, but the amount of radiation used is low. Your doctor will only advise you to have this type of scan if the benefits of having the scan are likely to outweigh the potential risk.
Your consultant will receive your scan results within 24 to 48 hours after your scan, and will contact you as soon as possible with the results.
Why choose Bupa Cromwell Hospital for PET/CT scans?
Our PET/CT scanner uses more sensitive detectors than most other scanners. These provide excellent quality images in the shortest possible time. The open design of the scanner and shorter scan time are helpful if you suffer from claustrophobia. We can also perform scans on children, using general anaesthetic if needed.
You will have your own private room for resting before the scan. Your relatives will also have a comfortable resting area. Our experienced doctors and nurses will take the time to answer any questions you may have and put you to ease before, during and after the scan. We offer a relaxed and friendly environment for patients.