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Bone scan questions

isaiah4031
Posts: 243
Joined: Jun 2001

Hello Friends,
I am scheduled for a bone scan in two weeks due to some pain I've been experiencing. My questions are: 1) Is it painful? 2)What does it entail? I know they inject me with something, but I don't know what happens after that. I was too dumb to ask these questions of my oncologist. Any help would be appreciated greatly. God bless you all...
Love, Jayne

cruf
Posts: 931
Joined: Oct 2000

Hi Jayne. I had a bone scan a few weeks ago and it wasn't anything to worry about. You're injected with a radioactive isotope(in the arm like having blood taken). You return about 2 hours later,lie on a table and relax.A machine scans you section by section. No pain. Nothing to be scared about. I, too, was having hip and back pain and the Orthopedist felt I should be checked out. Thank God,everything was clear. The scan doesn't only show if there's cancer, it also shows infection, fractures, arthritis etc... Good luck! Keep us informed of the results. Have a Happy and Healthy Holiday! HUGS!! Cathy

inkblot
Posts: 705
Joined: Jul 2001

Hi Jayne:

Ditto Cathy and Joy's replies.

When I had the scan, my doctor had given me the basic info on what to expect. However
I am claustrophobic and didn't realize how
close the scanner would be, over my face, at the beginning of the procedure. It was no more than 1/2" above my nose! I was very nervous about that. My husband was with me, fortunately, and the tech placed a chair for him beside the table and he held my hand and talked to me until the scanner moved past my face. (It took about 7 minutes) My heart was pounding away but I began to relax once I felt I could breathe again!

The scan took a total of 20 minutes and the tech placed the monitor above me so as
soon as I could see it, he pointed out what I
was seeing, etc..

When finished, I saw a tiny little "mini me"
skeleton. They also showed me someone else's scan which had what they call "hot spots" on it, which needed further investigation. It was quite interesting, once I was over the panic. The tech said that if anything shows up, then they do additional X-rays of that specific area etc., to determine exactly what it is.

Assuming that you don't have my phobia and you're O:K: with needles (as someone else mentioned)it's a very simple procedure and you won't feel anything at all. (Timewise, I'd suggest allowing about 2 hours, start to finish, depending upon how long you may expect to wait before getting the injection at the facility you'll be going to. Some facilities schedule more conscientiously than others and you can expect to be taken right in)

Good luck and keep us posted.

Love, light and laughter,
Inkblot

isaiah4031
Posts: 243
Joined: Jun 2001

Thank you all so much for the info. I feel much more at ease knowing what to expect. The needles don't bother me. In fact, I used to let student nurses practice IV's on me when I was in nursing school. Anyway, I will let you know how it goes. My appointment is in two weeks. Wouldn't it be awesome if someday we could have a great big reunion and we could all meet? Maybe someday...
Love, Jayne

pamtriggs's picture
pamtriggs
Posts: 408
Joined: Sep 2000

Dear Jayne
A Bone scan is as the others have described but I usually have to wait 3 hours from injection to scan. It is painless. A scan will show activity in the bones. This activity can be anything from fractures, arthritis to cancer lesions. You get a little mini skeleton of you & hot spots show as black areas. The bladder shows as a very big black circle as it takes up a lot of the isotope. Any areas of concern are usually further investigated with a CT scan or MRI. I have so many mets to my bones that I have more black than clear areas. It is a very useful diagnostic tool & can be very reassuring after yu have completed treatments to make sure they have got it all. Good luck with your results. Lots of Love. Pam

pippi
Posts: 53
Joined: Aug 2000

I read in one of the cancer books to have a drink of coke a cola after the scan that it is very good for flushing out the stuff that they inject into you. I have arthritus and the scan shows it up as a hot spot like bone cancer. They did extensive x-rays to make sure it wasn't. It was sooooooooooo scarey and I worried a lot over nothing as it all came back OK
Love Pippi

isaiah4031
Posts: 243
Joined: Jun 2001

Dear Pippi and everyone else,
Thanks for all the info, especially the stuff about things showing up that are not cancer. I already have some arthritis and this may help me not worry so much if things show up positive...I am working on really giving it over to God, and He is helping me. Psalm 20 is my encouragement right now. I hope you all have a blessed holiday season.
Love, Jayne

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