Mobile PET/CT Scanning - Singleton Hospital - Swansea - South Wales.

PET/CT-Swansea

Singleton Hospital

A Nuclear Medicine first for Swansea and South West Wales

PET/CT-Swansea

Information for Patients

What is PET/CT Scanning?

Positron Emission Tomography – Computed Tomography or PET/CT combines two scanning techniques: positron emission tomography (PET) and computerised tomography (CT).

Computed Tomography (CT) images provide anatomical information while the Positron Emission Tomography (PET) study gives an indication of activity and function. Overlaying the PET image onto the CT image produces a fusion of anatomy with activity.

Images acquired from both PET and CT devices can be combined into a single superimposed image (PET/CT). This image provides important diagnostic information as well as assessing the effectiveness of treatment in cancer. The radio-labelled radiopharmaceuticals are then passed out of the body in the urine or bowel movement.

Types of PET/CT Scans

There are three main types of PET/CT scans all with very similar procedures. However there are some differences, and you should be aware of these prior to your scan.

  • 18F-FDG PET/CT Scan
  • 18F-FEC PET/CT Scan
  • 18F-PSMA PET/CT Scan

How do I Get Referred?

Following a consultation with your clinician (e.g. GP or Consultant), they will complete and sign a referral form. Once the referral has been processed you will be notified with the date and time of your appointment.

Private Referrals

We also accept private referrals.

What Happens on the Day?

Before You Arrive

If you suffer from diabetes please read the section titled Diabetic Patient Preparation Guidance for PET/CT.

Unless we tell you otherwise, please don't have anything to eat or drink, except water, for six hours before your appointment. However, it’s quite helpful if you drink 4 or 5 glasses of plain water.

Please let us know if you have any disabilities so that we can ensure we are able to offer you the highest quality service.

Please confirm your appointment by phone, 01792 517965, 24 hours before your scan and arrive in plenty of time.

You’re welcome to bring a friend or a relative with you but for safety reasons we won’t normally allow them into the examination room. Female companions must not be pregnant.

It’s really important that you arrive by the time we tell you. We will need to give you an injection (see preparation for the scan section below) which has an extremely short shelf life and if you’re late we might not be able to use it and your appointment will have to be cancelled.

We may also give you a medicine to enhance the scan results. If we think this is necessary we’ll discuss it with you before your scan, however you will not be able to drive afterwards so you will need to make arrangements for someone to collect you.

Don’t forget to bring your appointment letter with you

Preparing for the Scan

Once you’ve checked in at reception, a member of the radiology will meet you, explain the procedure, go through your safety questionnaire with you and ask you to sign a consent form. You’ll have the opportunity to ask any questions about the scanning process.

We might ask you to change into a hospital gown. We’ll provide somewhere to store your personal possessions.

Throughout the procedure, you will be looked after by the radiology team. They will explain what’s happening and will be there if you experience any discomfort.

We'll need to inject you with a radiopharmaceutical. It’s a minor injection (no worse than having a blood test).

After the injection, you’ll need to lie still without talking for around an hour to allow the radiopharmaceutical to be absorbed into your body.

Then we’ll ask you to empty your bladder, following which you’ll be ready for the scan.

During the Scan

The radiographer/technologist operating the scanner will be able to see and hear you throughout the procedure.

We’ll ask you to lie down on the scanner bed and we'll make sure you're comfortable so you can stay as still as possible. You won’t feel anything.

Most scans take between 30 minutes and one hour.

You’re welcome to bring a friend or a relative with you, but for safety reasons, we won’t normally allow them into the examination room.

PET/CT Mobile Scanner

What Happens Next?

Do not drive if you have been instructed not to.

Drink plenty of fluids to help flush the radiopharmaceutical from your body.

We strongly recommend that you don’t have close contact with any pregnant women or young children for eight hours following the scan.

A radiologist will examine the images shortly after your visit and send a report to your doctor or consultant, normally within a few days.

For ethical and professional reasons, we cannot discuss results with you. Only your doctor or consultant can do this.

Diabetic Patient Preparation Guidance for PET/CT

Insulin Controlled Diabetes - IDDM

In preparation for your PET/CT Scan please adhere to the following:

  • Have a meal with your insulin 4 hours prior to your appointment – after this you must not have any more food or insulin before your scan. If you begin to suffer symptoms of hypoglycaemia in this time please contact the Nuclear Medicine Department for advice on 01792 517 965.
  • If you also take diabetic tablets or non-insulin injectable diabetic medication in addition to insulin and have not received guidance on how to take this before the appointment, please contact the Nuclear Medicine Department for advice on 01792 517 965.
  • Do not drink anything other than plain tap water for 4 hours prior to your appointment.
  • Please drink 1-2 pints of plain tap water during the 2 hours prior to the scan appointment time (please note that you do not need to have a full bladder for the procedure)
  • Take all non-diabetic medications on the day of your scan unless instructed otherwise by the bookings team
  • We would advise that you take a packed lunch and your diabetic medication with you to your appointment to have, if required, once you have finished your scan

Non-Insulin Controlled Diabetes (Tablet or Non-Insulin Injectable Diabetic Medication) - NIDDM

In preparation for your PET/CT Scan please adhere to the following:

  • Do not have anything to eat for 6 hours prior to your appointment
  • Do not drink anything other than plain tap water for 6 hours prior to your appointment
  • Please drink 1-2 pints of plain tap water during the 2 hours prior to the scan appointment time (please note that you do not need to have a full bladder for the procedure)
  • If you have a morning PET/CT appointment, please do not take your diabetic tablets on the morning of your scan but bring them with you so that you can take them immediately after your scan has been completed.
  • If you have an afternoon PET/CT appointment, please take your diabetic tablets on the morning of your scan, not less than 6 hours before the time of your appointment.
  • If you administer non-insulin injectable diabetic medication please contact the bookings team on 01792 517 965 for guidance on how to take this on the day of your scan.
  • Take all non-diabetic medications on the day of your scan unless instructed otherwise by the bookings team
  • We would advise that you take a packed lunch and your diabetic medication with you to your appointment to have, if required, once you have finished your scan.

Diet Controlled Diabetes

As above for ‘Non-Insulin Controlled Diabetes’ preparation above.

Downloads & Other Information

Diabetic Patient Preparation Guidance.
Patient Information & Guidance - 18F-FDG PET/CT Scan.
Patient Information & Guidance - 18F-FEC PET/CT Scan..
Patient Information & Guidance - 18F-PSMA PET/CT Scan..

Arriving For Your Scan

Singleton Hospital - Mobile PET/CT Scanning - Parking and Location Map