Irving, TX, June 26, 2017 — When a doctor orders a test with a funny-sounding name, it’s not at all uncommon for patients to get just a little worried. After all, most people understand basic X-rays and blood draws, but less-frequently ordered imaging procedures like a PET-CT scan can be a little intimidating without explanation.
“If a physician has ordered a PET-CT scan for diagnostic reasons, there’s no cause for alarm,” says Dr. Gregory Echt, founder of PET/CT of Las Colinas. “This procedure can provide a great deal of information about what is going on inside the body without actually making a doctor go inside to get it.”
A PET-CT scan is designed to combine the benefits of both these imaging tests in a single screening procedure. CT scans, or computerized tomography, are designed to take multiple X-rays from different points around the body. The resulting image is much more highly detailed than a single X-ray. PET scans, or positron emission tomography, uses a low-dose radioactive tracer, or dye, to enable areas of increased cell activity within the body show up on a special scan. When these two tests are rolled into a single procedure, doctors gain a great deal of information that can help them diagnose or rule out certain conditions, such as cancer.
“A PET-CT scan is likely a little more involved than what patients are accustomed to,” says Dr. Echt. “Patients can rest assured, however, that this test is painless and enables a doctor to ‘see’ inside the body without the need for surgery or more invasive procedures to provide diagnostic information.”
PET-CT scans typically require patients to fast in advance. Once patients arrive at a testing facility, they will be asked to take off any metal objects, such as watches or jewelry. From there, the tracer will be administered, generally through an IV. Once the tracer has been given ample time to circulate through the body, the test will begin. Patients simply lie down on a table that is passed through a doughnut-shaped scanner. After the images are obtained and quality checked, patients are released to go about their normal routines.
Patients who are asked to undergo PET-CT scans will likely be given pre-procedure instructions. It’s important for patients to follow these instructions carefully. If questions about why this test is being ordered arise, patients are advised to consult with their personal healthcare providers.
For more information about PET/CT of Las Colinas, visit the imaging center online.
About PET/CT of Las Colinas
PET/CT of Las Colinas is dedicated to the care and wellbeing of our patients. We understand that the foundation of a successful treatment plan – or a clean bill of health – begins with sophisticated, accurate imagery. We look forward to providing you with the highest level of care.Our imaging center is located conveniently across the highway from the Las Colinas Medical Center within the Las Colinas Cancer Center on Highway 161 in Irving, TX. and – once here – we offer hassle-free curbside parking.