Nuclear Medicine Scans

This tests involve an injection of a special dye that lights up in different parts of the body helping us evaluate various conditions.

After injection of the dye in a vein, a person typically lays on a special type of bed that detects the dye as it moves around the body. Radiation from this test is very low.

The two common nuclear medicine tests are a “bone scan” and a “kidney scan”.

A nuclear medicine scan table

Whole Body Bone Scan

  • Test that lets us see if there are abnormal areas in the bones of the body
  • We use it to check if there is spread of cancer, particularly prostate cancer to the bones of the body.

DEXA Bone Scan

  • This type of scan helps us evaluate the density of bone (how strong your bones are) in patients afflicted with osteoporosis, osteopenia.
  • The density of bones is important to know in patients who are on chronic prostate cancer hormone shots and those patients with chronic low testosterone levels who are at a higher risk for weaker bones.

Renal Scan

  • This is a very useful test that allows us to detect how well each kidney functions, which kidney works better, and how well each kidney drains urine.
  • We use this test to help us evaluate patients with kidney tumors as well as ureteral obstruction.
A medical technician stands next to a patient who is laying on a table receiving a medical scan in an MRI machine