Nuclear Medicine and Endocrinology

Chatswood Nuclear Medicine & Endocrinology
Grafton Nuclear Medicine & Endocrinology

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HIDA scan showing cholecystitis


Liver red cell scan showing haemangioma

Large Hepatic Haemangioma

Placeholder Picture

Hepatic Adenoma

Biliary Scans

Biliary Scans are commonly performed in patients with abdominal discomfort and suspected gallbladder disease, particularly if no abnormalities are seen on ultrasound. It is also performed in patients with persistent symptoms after gallbladder surgery in order to detect problems with bile duct drainage.

Technetium-99m DISIDA is used as the tracer. Following injection this agent is taken up by liver cells and excreted into bile. The flow of bile can then be observed as it moves into the gallbladder and down the bile ducts into the intestines. A medication is given halfway during the scan to assess how well the gallbladder contracts.

This scan requires special preparation:
• Fast for 6 hours (water allowed) but no longer than 12 hours.
• Codeine and morphine medications should be stopped for 2 days before the scan (eg. Panadeine, Oxycontin, Endone).

All biliary scans are bulk-billed.

Liver Scans

There are 2 commonly-performed types of biliary and liver scans:

• Liver Red Cell Scans
• Liver Sulfur Colloid Scans

All liver scans are bulk-billed.

Liver Red Cell Scans are used to detect the presence of haemangiomas within the liver. Haemangiomas are disorganised blood vessels that appear as tumours on CT and ultrasound scans.

No preparation is required for this scan. The tracer used is Technetium-99m pertechnetate. There are no side effects, and the injection is safe even in patients with kidney disease.

Liver/Spleen Sulfur Colloid Scans are performed to differentiate certain benign liver abnormalities (eg. focal nodular hyperplasia) from common liver tumours (eg. adenomas). They are also used to detect the presence of elevated blood pressures within the veins of the liver, spleen and intestines (portal hypertension) in patients with cirrhosis.

No preparation is required for this scan. 

Common Nuclear Medicine Scans

Bone ScansCardiac ScansLung ScansThyroid / Parathyroid ScansRenal ScansGastrointestinal ScansHepatic / Biliary ScansCerebral ScansEndocrine Tumour ScansInfection ScansLymphatic Scans