About Nuclear Medicine at Riverview Medical Center
What is Nuclear Medicine?Nuclear Medicine is a specialized area of radiology that uses a very small amount of radioactive materials to examine organ structure and function. Using a very small amount of a radioactive tracer, special gamma cameras are used in nuclear medicine procedures to detect the distribution of the tracer in the body, and specialized images of the behavior allow the radiologist to examine organ and tissue functions.
Nuclear Cardiac Scanning (Stress Testing)Nuclear Cardiac Scanning, also called nuclear stress testing, is a type of imaging that shows the flow of blood through a patient's heart, following an injection of a radiopharmaceutical substance or tracer. During the procedure, specialized images of the heart and the distribution of this tracer are obtained as the body moves through a scanner. When you visit you may have an Exercise Stress Test (nuclear scanning of your heart and exercise on a treadmill) or a Pharmaceutical Stress Test (a pharmaceutical used to replicate the effects of being on a treadmill).
What will a Nuclear Scan tell me?Nuclear scans can diagnose a number of medical conditions such as cancers, heart disease, and other conditions. The most common scans include:
- Renal scans – to examine the kidneys and detect abnormalities such as tumors or obstruction of blood flow.
- Thyroid scans – to evaluate thyroid function and better evaluate nodes or masses.
- Bone scans – to evaluate degenerative or arthritic changes in the joints, detect bone diseases and tumors, and/or determine the cause of bone pain or inflammation.
- Gallium scans – to diagnose active infections or inflammatory diseases, tumors, and abscesses.
- Heart scans – used to identify abnormal blood flow to the heart, to determine the extent of the damage of a heart muscle following heart attack.
- Brain scans – to investigate problems within the brain or in the blood circulation to the brain.
- Breast scans – used in conjunction with mammograms to locate cancerous tissue in the breast.
- Riverview Medical Center, 1 Riverview Plaza, Red Bank, NJ 07701
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