Tuesday, September 30, 2014

PET Scan

PET scan today at 1.30pm Austin hospital in Melbourne.  Fasting from 7am this morning.  I decided to go by public transport on my own rather than by car with Keith as he needed to do a few things here and I enjoy travelling usually via train/coach/tram.   A coach pulled up at the train station this morning at 10.15am as due to school holidays the trains are standing room only by the time they get to our station.  The comfortable coach with 7 passengers on it went direct to Southern Cross station (the terminal station) within an hour.  A train to Heidelberg and the hospital.   Coming home in peak hour was okay to the city from Heidelberg where I got a seat, however from Melbourne to home no such luck - as was standing room only.  Arrived home at 5.15pm exhausted but relieved that the scan was finished.   Results of scan will be on 10 Oct when I see the oncologist after the multi disciplinary round table discussion of Thursday 2 Oct to view my case.

The PET Centre at the Austin Hospital was opened in 1992 and performed the first ever PET scan in Australia. The Centre boasts modern equipment equal to that of any centre in the world and provides PET scanning for clinical applications and approved research projects, including pre-clinical drug trialing.
In clinical applications, a very small amount of labelled compound (called radiopharmaceutical or radiotracer) is introduced into the patient usually by intravenous injection and after an appropriate uptake period, the concentration of tracer in tissue is measured by the scanner.
A PET scan usually takes one hour to perform and requires the patient to lie completely still. If a brain scan is being performed the patients head is placed in a special head rest and immobilised.
The following is a general breakdown of the whole PET process:

  1. Typically the Cyclotron is run for about one hour to produce enough radionuclide required for the preparation of the tracer.
  2. The automated synthesis module is loaded with the chemicals required for the radiolabelling of the tracer.
  3. The radiosynthesis is monitored and controlled by computer.
  4. The radiopharmaceutical produced undergoes quality control tests including chemical and radiochemical purity.
  5. After passing quality control, the radiopharmaceutical is loaded into a syringe and calibrated for the required radioactivity dose.
  6. The patient is injected with the radiopharmaceutical and left for the relevant uptake time.
  7. The patient is placed on the scanner and positioned as comfortably as possible. Scanning is performed for an appropriate time interval to collect sufficient data for an image reconstruction.
  8. The PET Scan results are displayed on the computer and interpreted by the physician.
Altogether my scan took 2 hours and tonight I am pretty exhausted!

I am flying to Queensland tomorrow for a week - looking forward to seeing my newest little grand-daughter who is 3 week's old today, and my little grandkids Lux and Evie as well.  A good chance to have a rest and enjoy some sunshine and warmth before results on 10 Oct of both scans and decision making!

To all meso warriors who are doing it tough, my heart goes out to you.  Sending you my strength, hope and love.

No comments:

Post a Comment