Division of General Nuclear Medicine
Exams available at Nuclear Medicine of Naples:
>>See brochures at right to learn more about these exams.
>>Visit the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging.
General Nuclear Medicine is a specialty diagnostic imaging test that has been in existence since the 1950’s. The tests involve introducing a radionuclide into the body in order to help diagnose a disease process.A radionuclide is a radioactive material that is administered by a tiny injection or by pill form which is then imaged by a camera known as a gamma camera. The camera will perform a series of scans in order to take pictures of a specific body organ or disease. Nuclear Medicine testing is non-invasive and readily evaluates the functional aspects within the body and may identify medical problems at an earlier stage than other diagnostic tests.The patient will experience no side effects from the radiopharmaceuticals and the instances of any adverse or allergic reaction is very rare.There are many different radiopharmaceuticals used in Nuclear Medicine each specific for a different organ of the body. For example you will be injected with a radiopharmaceutical that is absorbed by your bones or one that may be taken up by the thyroid gland.The radioisotopes emit an x-ray or gamma ray which is picked up by the gamma camera in order to take images of your body. The body will eliminate the materials from your body at different rates depending on the body system that is being evaluated but most is gone by 24 hours.There is some radiation exposure associated with the nuclear medicine test but the benefits of determining the presence of disease is said to far outweigh the risk associated with the exposure. The most common isotope used in nuclear medicine is known as 99mTc- Technetium-Pertechnetate which is used in approximately 80% of the radiopharmaceuticals. Other isotopes utilized in nuclear medicine include Thallium, Iodine, Gallium, Flourine, and Rubidium to name a few.Technologists that are trained and certified to perform these procedures are licensed by the state in which they practice as well as being certified and registered by the NMTCB, Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board.