Sunday, December 18, 2011

Bone scan - Tracking cancer in the bone

Bone scan - Tracking cancer in the bone | Tracking of cancer in the bones using the Bone Scan. This tool is part of the development of nuclear medicine. As far as I am in Jakarta only in four hospitals, including Pertamina Hospital Center, where I was referred for bone scanning performed. It seems to work similar to a bone scan PET Scan (Positron Emission Tomography Scan), in terms of detection of cellular metabolism. Difference if the PET Scan cancer cells fed glucose-charged radio-isotopes for metabolic activity (eating), on the radio isotope bone scan (tracer) is used to track metabolic activity of bone cells.

At a certain incident that resulted in damage to the bone, the bone cells will be busy divide to replace damaged cells. This activity makes bone cells absorb the tracer-laden foods are more than the cells of healthy bones. Tracer that emits radioactive signals is then to be monitored using a special camera (gamma camera). Which found high concentrations of tracer (hot spots), you can bet there are abnormalities of bone.

Cancer cells found in bone also will reveal a hot spot, because cancer cells divide faster and eat more than normal cells. Tracer that was caught on camera in order to actually comes from the bone, then the required time (3 hours) and plenty of water to dissolve the tracer in soft tissue. In soft tissue tracer is more soluble than in the bone. Although the activity of bone cells can also be caused by other things such as arthritis and various infections, but if it has previously found the existence of cancer cells such as my case, it should be suspected spread of cancer to bone.

The main tool bone scan consists of a pair of gamma cameras mounted on two arms of the movable track throughout the body. While other equipment in the form of a set of computers that will change the signal from a gamma camera images. Before the scan was performed, first radioactive substance is injected through a vein in the arm. In order to percolate into the bone takes about two and a half to three hours.

During that time I have a lot to drink so that radioactive substances are not needed immediately dissolve. Shortly before the scan is done I have to pee, so radioactive that collects in the bladder does not give the wrong picture. Scanning process begins by creating a pattern of following the trajectory of the gamma camera's curves, so that the camera came with a distance less than 5cm from the surface of the body. The scanning process lasts approximately 20 minutes.

After waiting for about 15 minutes, then the result can be seen that there are activities in which the ribs 8 and 9 (costae VIII and IX). In the ambulance that took me back to the hospital where treated, though had joked with the nurse who drove me, I feel sad that in fact the cancer had spread to my ribs. [cancer]

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