Nuclear Medicine: Preparing for your procedure

How long does the procedure take?

The amount of time depends on the type of procedure you are having.
 
The following are a list of exams, the preparation needed and approximate length of the exam:

Patients who are pregnant or breastfeeding should inform their doctor and the technologist prior to the test.

Biliary (HIDA) Scan - Nothing to eat or drink for 4 hours.
Procedure takes 1 ½ hours.

Bone Scan - No preparation
Procedure takes 10 minutes for injection, 2-3 hour wait, pictures take 1 hour.

Cardiac Perfusion - Stop taking beta blockers 48 hours before appointment. Stop taking Theophylline products 4 days before appointment. Hold diabetic medications the morning of the procedure. A LIGHT breakfast the day of the test and no caffeine for 2 days, i.e., tea, coffee or chocolate, prior to the test.
The test requires two pictures of your heart, one at rest and one after stress. The stress test may either be a on a treadmill or with a medication as determined by your doctor.
Procedure takes 4-6 hours

Gallium - No preparation. Injection 1st day, imaging on second day.
Procedure takes 30-40 minutes.

Liver/Spleen - No preparation.
Pictures take 45 minutes.

Liver with Tagged Red Cells - No preparation. Pictures are taken 1 hour after injection and repeat pictures at 3 hours after injection.
Procedure takes 4 - 4 ½ hours.

Lung Scan (VQ scan) - No preparation. Will need a chest x-ray done within 24 hours.
Procedure takes 1 hour.

MUGA - No preparation.
Procedure takes 1 hour.

Renal Scan - Drink 3-4 glasses of fluid prior to arrival.
Pictures take approximately ½ - 1 hour (will depend if Lasix, a diuretic is required).

Thyroid Uptake and /or Scan - No thyroid medication for 2 weeks, no IVP or CT contrast for 2 months, no Kelp or Vitamins with Iodine for 2 weeks. The thyroid uptake requires 15 minutes the first day for a pill, imaging at 4 hours later on the same day (this takes 10 minutes) and repeat imaging the second day (also 10 minutes). The thyroid uptake and scan are often combined. The thyroid scan takes 30 minutes.
Procedure takes approximately 4½ hours 1st day and 40 minutes the 2nd day.