Molecular Imaging & Nuclear Medicine

Using Nuclear Energy To Nullify Diseases

Overview

The Department of Nuclear Medicine & Molecular Imaging (PET CT) started in 1996. It was one a major milestone in the development of Ruby Hall Clinic – the first Hospital owned Nuclear Medicine Department, outside Bombay, in the state of Maharashtra. The department was set up to advance Nuclear Medicine – the science of using Nuclear energy for peaceful purpose. Radiopharmaceuticals – chemicals attached to a small amount of radioactive isotope that once administered to the patient are able to specifically localize within organs and/or organ systems, are actively used for disease treatments. The imaging is done with highly sophisticated equipment known as Gamma Camera System. Ruby Hall Clinic has, upgraded its imaging system three times since the inception of the department, and recently has a state of the art, Dual head Gamma camera system.

The Latest Tech

After using Time-of-flight technology, for 10 years, Ruby Hall Clinic decided to upgrade it further with something that is latest and the best in cancer diagnosis across the world.

Digital PET-CT is the state-of-the-art technology in the world that’s available in some top-notch cancer institutes. Ruby Hall Clinic has installed digital PET-CT by GE Healthcare (Discovery MI) which is first in the Asian region.

With that Ruby Hall Clinic joins the system which is now available with world’s leading oncology centers such as Stanford, Mayo Clinic, Mass General, Dana Faber Cancer Institute & Memorial Sloan Kettering in the United States of America.

Equipment/Technology Used

Gamma Scans

  • Thyroid: Hyperthyroidism, Goiter or Cancer
  • Bone: Bone cancer spread or identifying causes of pain
  • Kidneys: Obstruction from stones or congenital, Renal Failure Pediatric
  • Imaging: Ureter Obstruction, Gastric Emptying and Reflux, Oncology
  • Heart: Ischemia, Heart Muscle Viability, Ejection Fraction
  • Liver/Gall Bladder: Abdominal Pain, Function of liver, gallbladder
  • Lungs: Blood flow obstruction and/or airway obstruction
  • Parathyroid: High Calcium Production
  • Stomach: Gastric Motility, Reflux
  • Brain: Epilepsy, Tumors
  • Breast Cancer
  • Cancer: All Organs
  • Infection and Inflammation: Osteomyelitis, Abscess

Therapy Treatments

  • Hyperthyroidism, Toxic nodular Goitres
  • Thyroid Cancer – Papillary, Follicular, Medullary types
  • Bone: Pain Palliation in Cancer Patients
  • Liver Cancers (SIR microspheres)

FAQs

Does a patient need to make specific preparations for a study?

Some tests require minimal or no preparation, (e.g. bone, brain, kidneys, and lungs), whereas others require specific preparations such as fasting for 2-4hours and no Beta-blocker medicines for 24 hours (cardiac studies). During scheduling of the test, the patient will be instructed for the specific preparation.

What is Nuclear Medicine?

Nuclear Medicine is a medical speciality in which the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases are made by the use of a small number of radioactive tracers. After administration of the tracer, images of the organ of interest in the patient’s body are obtained with a gamma camera that shows the localisation of the tracer in the organ, and physicians interpret them for the diagnosis of disease. Certain diseases are treated with high energy radiotracers in nuclear medicine based on the concept that high dose.

How is a nuclear medicine study performed?

The patient is given intravenously, for some studies orally or by inhalation, a small dosage of a radiotracer specific for an organ under study. Some studies require that the patient exercise or receive a drug that dilates the arteries in the heart. The tracer localises in the organ and emits gamma radiations that are detected by a special camera to form an image of the organ. Imaging of the organ is performed immediately, hours or days after administration of the tracer, depending on the type of study. The duration of imaging itself ranges from 15 to 120 minutes for different studies. Most tests require the patient to lie down on a bed, while others require the patient to sit. Some tests require taking many short pictures of the organ serially followed by one long picture at the end. Nuclear physicians interpret the images and can see any abnormality in the image either as a ‘hot’ area with increased localisation of the tracer or a cold spot with decreased localisation of the tracer, depending on the property of the tracer.

How is the tracer administered?

The tracer is administered most commonly by injection through the vein, and for some tests orally or by inhalation.

How long does a nuclear medicine test take?

It depends on the type of test. Since the localisation of the radiotracer varies with the physiological behaviour of the organ and the characteristics of the tracer, the time for optimal localisation varies from organ to organ. Sometimes two tests are needed for some disease entities such as with cardiac studies. For example, a lung scan needs only half an hour, a heart study may take 2 – 3 hours, and yet other tests may take 24-48 hours to complete.

Are there any side effects from these studies?

Because the administered radioactive dosages contain only a minimal amount of the carrier drug, no significant adverse or allergic reactions from the drug is commonly encountered. A patient receives a certain amount of radiation dose from nuclear medicine studies which is comparable to a diagnostic X-ray.

What are the benefits of nuclear medicine?

Nuclear medicine tests are very sensitive and can detect some diseases at early stages. Unlike MRI and CT studies that give only structural information, nuclear medicine tests provide information about the physiological or functional status and viability of different organs and tissues.

How does a patient make an appointment?

A primary physician or specialist can make a patient referral to the department or a patient make the appointment directly by calling, 020-6645 5265. OR 020-6645 5100 (60 Lines) or mail at gammascan@live.com

Panel of Doctors

Name OPD Timings
Dr. Sameer Sonar
(Director – Nuclear Medicine & PET CT)
Mon to Sat 2 PM – 6 PM (By Appointment Only)
Dr. Amol Galge
(Consultant, PET-CT)
Mon to Sat 9 AM – 6 PM

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