Bone Scan: Definition, Purpose, Risks, and Procedures
What is a Bone Scan?
A "bone scan" is the name for two different kinds of medical tests that are very different. One type of bone scan is used to test for and diagnose osteoporosis, which is a condition in which the bones are brittle, very fragile and break easily. This test uses either ultrasound or special x-ray beams to check the density of the bone or to see how solid it is. This test is very quick, lasting only a few minutes, and there are no side-effects. No special preparation is required before the test.
The other type of bone scan identifies the presence of unusual active formation of bone. It is often used to detect arthritis, cancer or infection, or to see precisely where stress fractures have occurred. Approximately three hours prior to the scan an intravenous (IV) line will be placed in your arm and a liquid called technetium will be injected into your body through it. Technetium is a substance that is naturally found in your own body. Your body uses it to form new bone. It is mildly radioactive. After the bones have had enough time to absorb the technetium, about three hours after the injection, you will lie on an examination table and a special camera will spend the next 30 to 90 minutes taking an image of your body. The areas where a bone is growing abnormally will show up brighter than other areas of your skeleton on the image.
Purpose of Bone Scans
- Discover bone tumor or decide if disease from another range, for example, the bosom, lung, kidney, thyroid organ camera.gif, or prostate organ camera.gif, has spread (metastasized) camera.gif deep down.
- Help analyze the reason or area of unexplained bone agony, for example, continuous low back torment. A bone output might be done first to help decide the area of an anomalous bone in complex bone structures, for example, the foot or spine. Follow-up assessment at that point might be finished with a figured tomography (CT) examine or attractive reverberation imaging (MRI).
- Help analyze broken bones, for example, a hip break or an anxiety crack, not plainly observed on X-beam.
- Discover harm to the bones caused by contamination or different conditions, for example, Paget's infection.
Preparing for a Bone Scan
Bone Scan Procedure
- You should evacuate any gems that may impede the scan. You may need to remove all or the vast majority of your garments. You will be given a material or paper covering to use amid the test.
- Your arm will be cleaned where the tracer will be infused. A little measure of the tracer is infused.
- It takes around 2 to 5 hours for the tracer to tie to your bone so pictures can be brought with an extraordinary camera. Amid this time, you might be made a request to drink 4 to 6 glasses of water so your body can wash out the tracer that does not gather in your bones. Just before the scan starts, you will most likely be made a request to exhaust your bladder to keep any radioactive pee from obstructing the perspective of your pelvic bones amid the scan.
- You will lie on a table, with a substantial filtering camera above you. It might move gradually above, underneath, and around your body, examining for radiation discharged by the tracer and creating pictures. The camera does not deliver any radiation.
- You might be made a request to move into various positions. You have to lie as yet amid each scan to abstain from obscuring the photos.
- A bone scan takes around 60 minutes.