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Pet Scan again

fishingirl's picture
fishingirl
Posts: 188
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi everyone!! I haven't been on CSN for quite some time. I do check in and see what's going on:) I wish everyone the very best, always.

I go for my first PET scan at the end of April. We don't have a PET scan here on Vancouver Island, so I will be going to Vancouver to have it done. I have a few questions, if anyone could help me. Is it anything like a MRI, also they told me it will take 2 hrs. I was wondering why it would take that long for a scan.

My last radiation treatment was Oct.28'09. I am getting to feel better all of the time. I still get food stuck in the back of my throat, but I can put up with that. I heard it could take up to a yr. for all of the swelling to go. Or, it may not.

Thanks so much,
Cindy

Fire34
Posts: 350
Joined: Feb 2010

Cindy
My pet scan consisted of getting an injection a radioactive isotope and waitning for that isotope to circulate to the tumor site. You then lay on a table similar a ct and the machine reads the isotope/tumor interaction letting them know whether the tumors are dead or alive so to speak. they sure waited a long time for your pet, mine was 3 months out. I finished NOV 30th 09 Best wishes
Dave

fishingirl's picture
fishingirl
Posts: 188
Joined: Nov 2009

Now I know more about it from people that have actually gone through it. I googled it, but not the same.

Dave, the last time I saw my oncologist (last Wed.) is when he suggested it. He told me that a PET scan was much more accurate than the CT scan and the MRI. It will take me 2 days to have it done. The drive from where I live is approx. 5 hrs. to the ferry, and the ferry is 1 1/2 hrs., then the drive to the cancer clinic. My MRI was clean and my oncologist said everything looked clean and good. But just to be sure, he thought I should have a PET scan. Sometimes it can be very inconvient living in a remote area. Especially having to go through this rough stretch. So....therefore, I'll have that PET scan:)
Cindy

GRAVEY's picture
GRAVEY
Posts: 84
Joined: Jan 2010

And remember, they will bring the syringe with the radioactive sugar to your side in a metal box, she/he will then remove the syringe from the box. The syringe is encased in a complete metal casing. So the nurse cant even touch the outside of the syringe, but they are going to inject into you what they cant even touch. Its rather scary, but that is what is going to happen. You'll then lay down for about an hour to let the radioactive material get into your entire body, they'll then take you to the table, theyll strap your arms down so you dont have to hold them by your side, they'll start scanning you, and at some point, if your getting the full PET/CT scan, they will inject you with the contrast for the CT that makes you hot all over. the scan will take roughly 20 to 30 minutes. Some do better than others with the CT contrast, I didnt do so bad this last time, it usually takes my breath for a second, this time it didnt. But your sphincter muscle gets really warm, feels like your about to go in your pants because the contrast gets through all those blood vessels, which apparently your sphincter has a lot of. Sorry to be so graphic, but this is what you'll experience. Good luck, and prayers for a clean reading are headed your way.
I just had my first scan since my last treatment on December 17th.

GRAVEY

Kent Cass's picture
Kent Cass
Posts: 1746
Joined: Nov 2009

Previous posts are correct. I've had two Pets. ENT Dr. said every 6-months, post-treatment. The stuff they put in you is not cool, but what they use: starts with an injection of sugar water and radioactive isotopes. Then you kinda lay there for some 45 minutes of "quiet time," which allows the stuff to spread correctly within you. Then, you go thru the actual Pet Scan: strap you onto the table, and then the scan happens at different levels that last 7-8 minutes, each, at a different level of your upper-torso. Open machine, should not be a claustrophobic threat to anyone. And, with me, after each Pet they take me to another room for a Cat Scan, and that's where the warmth thing happens. And, you will be advised to drink a lotta liquids/water, to help flush the system. Drove myself to and from, each time, so it is no big deal, Cindy, though with your distance of travel will be a lot more complicated than mine was (3-mile drive for me).

I go thru my third PS on April 8th. Last one came back as "something might have shown under my tongue," but my ENT said he wasn't concerned about- an area prone to false positives. Odds are, Cindy, so soon after treatment you got nothing to worry about. Too soon for a recurrence to show it's ugly head. My last Rad was in early-April of 09, so I am on a 6-month schedule.

kcass

fishingirl's picture
fishingirl
Posts: 188
Joined: Nov 2009

Again, thank you to everyone! You have been a great help! It's too soon to worry about it anyway. lol!!

Pam M's picture
Pam M
Posts: 2194
Joined: Nov 2009

Cindy,

I had a PET scan after I was diagnosed - it wasn't bad. The way I remember it, the largest chunk of time was spent sitting alone, quietly in a room, waiting for the injection to circulate. You are not allowed to fall asleep, but can sit quietly, read or watch TV. If you fall asleep, your brain can be more active than it is when reading or watching TV. If there's a lot of activity, false positives may show up in your brain. The PET just measures activity going on when the sugar solution is circulating in your body - active areas will "feed"; inactive areas won't. The scan portion was like a CT, but longer - not enclosed, not bad. And yes, I wish that someone had warned me about the sudden tingling and warmness I'd feel in my groin before I had my first CT. I didn't have that sensation during my PET.

Bring us good news next month.

fishingirl's picture
fishingirl
Posts: 188
Joined: Nov 2009

Thanks Pam!

That's reassuring! lol!!!

Cindy

Hondo's picture
Hondo
Posts: 5608
Joined: Apr 2009

Glad to hear from you again, the other post pretty much gave you all the info you are looking for, it vary some but not to much. I like to think my self as a strong guy but find myself asking Jesus to hold my hand when doing the PET scans it just gives me a little more reassurance. All the best to you my little sister and I will be praying your PET is clean as a whistle.

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