Fasting is not required. Patients should be well-hydrated. The patient will be required to lie flat and remain still for the images.
The patient receives an injection of a radioactive substance, usually into a vein in the arm. This material travels through the bloodstream and concentrates in the bones. The injection feels similar to a blood test and there are no side effects.
We may acquire some images at the time of the injection, and all patients will be required to return 2-3 hours after their injection for the actual scan.
The patient may leave the department between the injection and delayed images, and is encouraged to increase their fluid intake and to void frequently prior to returning for images.
A bone scan is done to:
Find bone cancer or determine whether a cancer from another area, such as the breast, lung, kidney, thyroid gland, or prostate gland prostate, has spread (metastasized) to the bone. .
Help diagnose the cause or location of unexplained bone pain, such as ongoing low back pain. A bone scan may be done first to help determine the location of an abnormal bone in complex bone structures such as the foot or spine.
Follow-up evaluation then may be done with a computed tomography (CT) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
Help diagnose broken bones, such as a hip fracture or a stress fracture, not clearly seen on x-ray.