What is Nuclear Medicine?
Nuclear Medicine is a diagnostic medical imaging and treatment speciality. It combines elements of applied anatomy and physiology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and computing with patient care skills.
Radioactive tracers are administered to patients in order to diagnose and/or treat disease. Nuclear Medicine differs from other imaging techniques such as X-ray and CT by giving different information about the function of the systems of the body. However, as imaging technology advances, close correlation with radiological techniques is essential.
The use of these radioactive tracers is closely monitored. The techniques are very safe both for the patient and for the technologist.<\p>
Follow the link below to view an illustrated introduction to Nuclear Medicine.
Nuclear Medicine covers the whole spectrum of medical diagnostic and investigational use of "unsealed" radionuclides, plus their therapeutic applications and the Society is committed to its safe practice and high quality throughout the United Kingdom.
Nuclear Medicine is older than CT, MRI and ultrasound. It was first used in patients over 60 years ago.
Nuclear Medicine Imaging
| A Gamma Camera
|| A PET CT Scanner
Unlike most other methods of imaging the body, nuclear medicine describes organ function as well as structure. This often makes earlier diagnosis possible.
Nuclear Medicine Therapies
Radiopharmaceuticals can be used to treat certain diseases. In Europe the main therapies are:
- Thyroid cancer and Hyperthyroidism
- Cancer bone pain
- Joint pain and arthritis
The number of nuclear medicine therapies being developed and approved is increasing.
What is Nuclear medicine poster
A technetium bone scan showing tumours
Find out more about the history of Nuclear Medicine