The Basics of PET/CT

Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography (PET/CT) is a combination of two standard tools in medical imaging diagnosis. In effect PET/CT is a hybrid of Positron Emission Tomography (PET scan) and Computed Tomography (CT).

Positron Emission Tomography is useful in detecting a metabolic symbol of cancer growth inside the body and Computed Tomography provides a detailed picture of the internal anatomy of the body. This detailed anatomy can help to reveal the following information that maybe crucial for a surgeon who maybe planning what technique to use against a cancer:

  • Location of the tumour
  • Size of the tumour
  • Shape of the tumour or abnormal growth
  • In effect the PET/CT scanner integrates the benefits of the individual PET and CT scans to produce a superior method of detecting cancers in their early stages and locate them more accurately.

PET/CT as an imaging tool is the most sophisticated scanner in the world at this moment in time. Fusing functional imaging and anatomical imaging from PET and CT scans respectively; PET/CT facilitates early detection of metabolic abnormalities as small as 4mm or 5mm in size.

This combination of PET and CT scans provides a new and unique dimension in medical diagnosis.

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