ZocdocAnswersWhat will a SPECT tell my doctor about my internal organs?

Question

What will a SPECT tell my doctor about my internal organs?

My doctor has scheduled a SPECT. What will it show him that he wouldn't be able to see with other tests?

Answer

SPECT stands for single photon emission computed tomography. SPECT is a very specialized type of imaging that uses radioactive tracers to evaluate the activity in various different organs in your body in 3 dimensions. SPECT can be used for many different purposes and can provide many different types of information. It all depends on what type of SPECT you are having done. Here are a few examples. 1. Myocardial perfusion scan - probably the most common one. This test is used to look for blockages in the heart's arteries. 2. Bone scan - this is a test used to look for areas of bone turn over. This is often don when looking for areas of the bone which have cancer. 3. Brain scan - This test is done when looking for a cause of memory problems or dementia. 4. White blood cell scan - This test is done when looking for the location of an infection. The best physician for you to ask about this test is the doctor that ordered the test. This could be a cardiologist, an oncologist, or perhaps a surgeon. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with that doctor. The two of you can discuss the reason the test was ordered and what your doctor expects to accomplish from the test.

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