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I am getting apprehensive

kikz's picture
Posts: 1346
Joined: Jun 2010

about my first pet scan. I have had at least 4 ct scans which are not that bad. I am most worried about being in a tunnel in the dark. I was told to fast for 6 hours before and drink only water. I read somewhere not to exercise vigorously which is never a problem in my life but I do go to yoga on that day. I think I'll skip it this week. I didn't go to my 2-mile walk this morning. I felt so tired yesterday after my mom's party on Saturday and I washed 6 or 7 loads of clothes and got the house back in order on Sunday. I still feel really tired today even though I slept good. I think the stress is weighing on me too although I am remaining in good spirits.

Anything else I should know about the pet scan? I have been prescribed ativan. I can't wait until it's over. I have been in remission for 19 months and I am no longer use to being poked and prodded like I was during treatment. I am not excited about the prospect of going back to that reality.

Thanks for any help you can offer.


forme's picture
Posts: 1162
Joined: Aug 2010

Hi Karen,

I have had many Petscans and all were quick and not difficult. There is lighting inside the scanner. It is not dark. I also do not like to be in small spaces, so I close my eyes when my head enters the scanner. You will be moved on a table that goes through the scanner slowley. So you will know when to just close youe eyes and relax. If you tend to get cold, ask for a blanket or two before the scan starts. My feet and arms are always the coldest so they tuck me in nice and snug.
You will do fine.
Positive thoughs coming your way..

clamryn's picture
Posts: 508
Joined: Jun 2010

Hi Karen, I haven't posted very much lately. Been in a lot of pain. Karen I have had a lot of Pet/scans and I would rather have that than the ct/scans. When I take a ct/scan, I have to hold my breath and I can't do that very well. On the pet/scan they take a little blood first out of my arm to check blood sugar level. I think they do this to everyone. I do not have diabetes. Then if everything is okay, they will give you the surgar water that will light up any cancer. I like the pet/scan because it covers the whole body and shows where the cancer might be and I don't have to hold my breath. The Ct/scan won't do that. The test will take about 20 minutes to slide through. It is a donut but I just close my eyes. Sometimes I sing to myself... (I'm Henry the 8th I am....Henry the 8th I am I am.) Makes it go faster. I think good thoughts...about my kids or grandkids.

Good luck Karen. You will do fine.

2timothy1 7's picture
2timothy1 7
Posts: 348
Joined: Jan 2012

Hello Karen
A PET scan show if there is cancerous activity more so at the cellular level. A radionuclide is given to you which will go to the areas of the body where there might be some cancerous activity going on. It will "highlite" that area of the body. Hope this help some. Good luck !!!!

lovesanimals's picture
Posts: 1364
Joined: Sep 2011

I totally understand your worry about being in the scan itself because I myself have a history of claustrophobia and panic attacks. I had my first PET scan last Tuesday. The fact that I'm already on an antidepressant for anxiety and panic attacks made the scan a piece of cake. I've no doubt that your medicine will make the experience easy for you too. While the "pictures" are being taken, go to your "happy place" - a fun family vacation, your mom's birthday party, things you did with the kids, etc.

Let us know how it turns out. Take care.


Posts: 1995
Joined: May 2003

Lots of good advice from the ladies. Where I went, they let me choose my kind of music and played it while I was in the machine. No big deal - just close your eyes and relax. It's over before you know it!


Posts: 1223
Joined: Jun 2008

your PET may be finished. If so, I hope it went well. It is really the most boring thing i have ever done. They make you lie still (no magazines or ear phones - nothing!) for an hour after the isotope injection to have it circulate. I always fall asleep and they have to wake me up to go into the room where the scanner it. I also have a bit of a phobia, so I NEVER open my eyes. I you do, it is not bad though, lit up and not quite as narrow as an MRI. Mine takes 30 minutes or so, and I fall asleep during this too. HOnestly, compared to everything else we have to do, a piece of cake!

Let us know how it goes,

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