Nuclear medicine is a specialized area of radiology that uses very small amounts of radioactive materials, or radiopharmaceuticals, to examine organ function. It is often used to help diagnose and treat abnormalities very early in the disease lifecycle.
Nuclear medicine specialists administer radiopharmaceuticals to patients and then monitor the tissues or organs in which the drugs localize. They operate special cameras that detect and map the radioactive drug in a patient's body. Abnormal areas show higher-than-expected or lower-than-expected concentrations of radioactivity.
Nuclear medicine differs from other diagnostic imaging technologies because it often determines the presence of disease on the basis of metabolic changes, rather than changes in organ structure.
Some of the more commonly performed nuclear medicine scans:
Our nuclear medicine radiologists have mastered the most advanced and complex treatments available and perform the full breadth of nuclear medicine radiology tests and procedures.