PET/CT (Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography)


What is PET/CT and how does it work?


PET/CT | diagnostic imaging,PET/CT combines Positron Emission Tomography (PET) with Computed Tomography (CT) technology to aid in the diagnosis of cancer. PET/CT is also a valuable tool for determining the extent to which cancer has spread and how a patient is responding to treatment. In addition, PET can be used to evaluate patients with cardiac and neurological disorders such as seizures and dementia.

PET is a nuclear medicine test that uses special imaging cameras and a radioactive solution called FDG (Flurodeoxyglucose) to create very clear pictures of cell metabolism. CT uses X-rays to provide detailed information about the location, size, and shape of lesions or growths in the body. When combined in a single machine, the two techniques provide accurate, specific information about where abnormalities are located and whether they are cancerous.

 All of Community Radiology's PET/CT Centers are ACR Accredited

   All of Community Radiology's PET/CT Centers are ACR Accredited


How do you prepare for your PET/CT procedure?


• Please arrive at least 15 minutes before your appointment and bring your prescription or referral. If you need to reschedule or cancel, call 24 hours in advance.

• Let us know what medications you take, including non-prescription medicines and supplements.

• Tell us if you are or may be pregnant or are breastfeeding. 

• Do not eat, drink, chew gum, or use cough drops or mints for 5 hours before your exam. 

• Avoid caffeine, sugar, tobacco, and heavy exercise for 48 hours before your exam.

• If you need to take medication before your exam, you can use a very small amount of water to swallow the pills.

• If you are diabetic, please contact the office in advance for instructions.


What should you bring to your procedure?


• Prescription or referral from your physician

• List of medications you take

• Insurance cards

• Previous MRI, CT or PET/CT scans and reports performed outside our network


What will you experience during your PET/CT scan?

Upon Arrival

• Your medical history will be reviewed with you prior to starting the exam. Your blood sugar level will be checked by a finger stick to ensure your glucose is at a normal level. The technologist will then administer an injection which contains the FDG solution which will highlight the cells being examined.

• You will wait for about 60 to 90 minutes as the solution distributes itself throughout your body. 

• Unless you are having a scan of the brain, you can usually read or listen to music while waiting for your scan to begin. If you are having a brain scan, we'll ask you to wait in a quiet, dimly lit room to avoid stimulating your brain. 

• You will be asked to remove any metal from the part of your body being scanned.


During the PET/CT scan 

• Staff will escort you to the scanner and make you comfortable. 

• We will take images as you lie still in the scanner. 

• You will be able to communicate with the technologist throughout the procedure 

• The scan usually lasts between 30 and 45 minutes.


After the PET/CT scan

• You may leave immediately after your PET/CT scan and resume your normal activities. 

• The radiologist will review your scans and send the results to your physician. 

• Urgent findings will be called or faxed in to your physician.


To schedule an appointment, call (888) 601-0943 or click here

Back to top