Nuclear Medicine 101

Posted on January 8th, 2008 by Cam.
Categories: Let's talk.

Back to the nuclear medicine ward tomorrow morning at 8:00am. This is the same procedure that I had when I was an inpatient and should show up a few ‘hot spots’ on my skeleton. It generally show up where there is high metabolic activity in tissue. Usually this means trauma to the bone or cancer.

I will go in first thing to have a radioactive isotope injected into my arm that spreads through my blood stream. While this is happening I will be scanned in what reminds me of a big sandwich toaster. A big plate above me and a big plate below. This initial scan only takes about 30 mins for the whole process.

I am then able to go home to take it easy and drink lots of water. This will help the isotope settle into my skeleton and gather in high concentration in the hot spots. So I will head back to the hospital at about 11:00 for a scan that will take about an hour. I have to pee before I leave, then have a shower so there is no trace of radioactive substance near my (insert whistling noise here), otherwise they will be getting worried about nothing. The radioactive isotope eventually leaves the body through urine.
This scan will show up my rib fractures, the zapped cancer in my sternum and anything else that needs to be looked at. It will give a good indication of what to check out with the MRI. I am back at the specialist on Thursday morning.

For the next few days I am not to pee on anyone’s lemon tree, or sign my name on green grass, or use urinals unless they have a ‘microwave safe’ stamp on the back. I kind of feel like I will have a secret weapon with radioactive urine. Like one of those super-hero stories where a simple experiment with nuclear substance goes horribly wrong and I will end up with super powers that if harnessed for good I could fight for justice. I just don’t think that a super-hero with radioactive urine would cut it with the other super-heros. I mean, what good is it if in that crucial heroic moment I get stage fright, or my zipper gets stuck. And it is not as glorious as being able to fly or leap from building to building. Hanging out with Iceman could be embarrassing and getting too close to The Human Torch would have inevitable and obvious consequences.

Come to think of it, if anything does go wrong and I end up with super-powers, I will just keep it to myself.


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