Nuclear medicine uses a small number of radioactive materials to produce images used to evaluate organ function and structure. Nuclear medicine imaging is among the safest diagnostic tools because radiation amounts are usually smaller than what patients receive during a routine X-ray.
What does nuclear medicine help diagnose?
By measuring behavior of radionuclides in the body, nuclear medicine helps diagnose various conditions such as tumors, infections, hematomas, organ enlargement, and cysts. Providers can also evaluate organ function, blood circulation, identify abnormal blood flow to the heart, determine the extent of the damage of the heart muscle after a heart attack, and/or measure heart function using nuclear medicine imaging.