Nuclear Medicine Imaging

Nuclear Imaging

Nuclear Medicine Imaging is a branch of diagnostic imaging able to demonstrate physiological processes within your body and therefore highlight diseases and abnormality.

Noosa Radiology Nuclear Imaging department is equipped with a state of the art Siemen SPECT-CT gamma camera, the first of its kind on the Sunshine Coast. This latest technology combines Nuclear Medicine with CT images thereby improving diagnostic accuracy with faster acquisition.

Most Nuclear Medicine scans involve a small low dose radioactive injection with no side effects. The injections stay in the body for just a few hours before being excreted naturally. The tracer injection is distributed within the body, subsequently showing any abnormal areas. The gamma camera system is used to acquire and process the images

Preparing for your examination

Please be aware that all Nuclear Medicine scans require an appointment. Please call us to arrange a time.

What will you need to bring;

  • A referral from your GP or specialist
  • Medicare card
  • Pension/concession card
  • Previous films from other clinics relating to the area being scanned with us

Some tests require specific preparation e.g. fasting and stopping all caffeine products. You may be asked to provide a list of your medications. Our staff will make you aware of all preparation when booking your appointment.

Please tell us if you are pregnant or breastfeeding


Reasons for Nuclear Medicine

Nuclear Medicine is method to evaluate both function and structure of internal organs. By using a ‘gamma camera’ to acquire images the organs can be assessed for certain diseases and abnormalities.

Common reasons for nuclear medicine include investigation of infection, fractures and cancers within the bones. Heart disease, thyroid problems, gallbladder dysfunction and lung disease are also commonly investigated.

What to expect

On arrival you will be asked to fill out a Nuclear Medicine questionnaire. You will be taken through to the Nuclear Medicine imaging room by a technologist. You may be provided with a gown to wear instead of your own clothes and be asked to empty your pockets and remove your belt. You will then be positioned on a padded scanning bed.

A small injection in the arm or hand is given prior to images that will be taken over the area of interest. The gamma camera comes close to the body in order to generate clear images. You can breathe normally throughout the scan and you will need to remain still. Procedure times vary depending on the area being scanned. For example a bone scan involves two sessions of 10 minutes and 45 minutes with a 2 hour break in-between. You can go away in between sessions

When can you get your results?

The images obtained are digitally recorded. At Noosa Radiology our highly trained and qualified Nuclear Medicine Physician interpret the images and provides a report for your doctor and/or referring health care provider within 48 hours after your scan.

You will be able to take your images on the day or collect them at a time that is convenient for you. You may need to make a follow up appointment to discuss the results with your referring practitioner.

We invite you to ask any additional questions you may have before or after your examination.