What is a SPECT bone scan? | Dr. Andrew Cash, MD Las Vegas, Nevada

By Brooke Strickland and Dr. Andrew Cash

SPECT bone scans can help find hidden bone fractures and can also diagnose and monitor the growth of cancer in the bones.  These types of scans are generally safe, however some patients experience adverse reactions to the radioactive dye they receive, which can cause pain or swelling where the needle was injected, or sometimes patients can have allergic reactions to the solution used.

When you arrive for your bone scan, you will get an IV placed in your arm and the radioactive substance will be injected.  It is a small dose and you will be asked to wait until the solution is absorbed into your body.  The SPECT machine is a large circular machine that uses a camera to see the radioactive solution that your body absorbed.   You will be asked to lie still while the machine rotates around you, taking pictures of parts of your bones.  The computer then translates and calculates the information received and creates a 3-D image of your body.  These images show up in different colors that show what parts of your body absorbed more of the radioactive solution and which parts had less.  These results are sent to your doctor to analyze.  You may need to wait several days for your doctor to receive results, as it depends on the type of issue the scan was used for.

For more information on SPECT bone scans and what you may need one for, contact Dr. Cash at www.disclv.com.

You can also view Dr. Cash's Verified Reviews® here or his personal page at www.andrew-cash-md.com.