(FAQ) Frequently Asked Questions

It is very important that you follow instructions provided for the best possible imaging. If for any reason you have questions or have eaten, please contact our office prior to arrival.

If there is a possibility of pregnancy, please inform our staff prior to your appointment.

Can I eat and take my medication prior to my appointment?

PET imaging is a fasting study, no consumption of food or liquid (except water) for 4 hours prior to your exam. We ask that you drink plenty of water prior to your exam.

Please discuss your medication needs with our office prior to your appointment.

Do I need someone to drive me to my appointment?

 PET/CT does not alter your ability to drive.

Do I need to wear special clothing?

Please wear comfortable loose clothing, free of buttons, snaps and zippers. Medical scrubs are available if necessary.

How long will the procedure take?

1 ½ – 2 hours. A radioactive tracer is administered upon your arrival, followed by a one hour wait (uptake time). The length of the scan is approximately 15-30 minutes, depending upon your weight.

What is a PET/CT?

Positron Emission Tomography (PET), Computer Tomography (CT) is a unique imaging study that allows physicians to pinpoint the exact size and shape of diseased tissue. A PET scan utilizes a radioactive glucose isotope that targets malignant cells.

Following injection, the patient receives a whole body PET scan to reveal malignant lesions that may have been overlooked by conventional imaging (CT, MRI or X-ray). When PET/CT is performed, it integrates both technologies, making it possible to obtain anatomical and biological data. PET/CT increases accuracy in tumor detection.

What are the benefits of PET/CT over other types of x-rays?

PET provides increased information regarding function and potential malignancy within a lesion. CT provides a detailed location of the concerned area. This imaging modality can:

  • Improve treatment planning
  • Reduce biopsy sampling error
  • Alter surgical procedures
  • Assist in treatment and therapy direction
  • Save lives

During the resting time, can I read or talk on the phone? Can my family member join me?

We ask you to refrain from all activities, including reading or talking, as this can alter the outcome of your study. Family members need to remain in our waiting room. You may bring your own CD player or iPod with you to your appointment.

What is the future for PET/CT imaging?

PET/CT imaging is currently one of the most effective technologies available in identifying coronary artery disease. Cardiac PET provides accuracy and the capacity to monitor patients and favor maximal patient outcome at minimal overall expense. PET has also been approved for early stage diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, Dementia, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.

For additional information consult your physician.