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Your Lung Scan is scheduled at Jamestown
Please report to the Admissions desk in the
front lobby of the hospital 5-10 minutes
before the scheduled time. Your procedure
will take approximately
A nuclear medicine lung scan is a
diagnostic procedure performed to evaluate
the movement of air (ventilation) and blood
flow (perfusion) both into and out of the
lungs. In order to function properly, the lungs
depend on an adequate supply of air to the
air sacs and blood to their arteries.
Conditions like emphysema, infection, and
pulmonary embolism can affect lung
function. Pulmonary embolism is caused by
a blood clot that obstructs the blood flow into
an artery. The ventilation/ perfusion lung
scan can detect pulmonary embolism (blood
clot) as well as other conditions which affect
lung function. The procedure is routinely
done as two separate studies: The first
involves acquiring images after you have
inhaled a small amount of radioactivity
through a mouthpiece; the second involves
imaging after a radiopharmaceutical has
been injected into the blood. The radiologist
will compare the two sets of images to
identify any abnormalities or filling defects.
The nuclear medicine lung scan involves the
administration of a very small amount of a
radioactive material which is quickly
cleared from your body. The amount of
radiation you will receive is comparable to
that from an x-ray CT scan.
1. Inform your physician or the
technologist if you have had a reaction
to products containing human serum
** The radiopharmaceutical injected for
the perfusion scan contains albumin, a
blood product. Inform the technologist
if your religious affiliation does not
permit the use of blood products.
2. Wear comfortable, loose-fitting
3. A chest x-ray may be obtained within
12 hours of doing the scan.
4. Inform the technologist if you are
pregnant or nursing an infant.
For the ventilation lung scan, you will need
to breathe a tasteless, odorless
radioactive gas through a mouthpiece for
10 minutes. This radioisotope will travel to
the target organ (the lungs) and transmit a
pattern of rays representing the organ
size, shape, and function. The rays will be
detected by a special camera which relays
the information to a computer that
produces a characteristic image on a
monitor. You will need to lie on a scanning
table with the nuclear camera placed near
your chest. Multiple images will be taken
of the lungs from various angles. Following
the ventilation scan, the technologist will
inject a diagnostic drug containing a small
amount of radioactivity into a vein in your
arm. Multiple images will again be taken of
the lungs from various angles. It is
important for you to lie still during image
acquisition as movement may result in the
need for additional scans.
A ventilation/ perfusion lung scan is not
recommended during pregnancy. Discuss
this matter with your physician before
undergoing the procedure.
** If you are a nursing mother, formula
feeding should be substituted for breast
** There is a very rare possibility of
adverse patient reaction to the drug
used for the perfusion study in patients
with a pre-existing severe pulmonary
You may resume your regular activities
after completion of the scan unless you are
told otherwise by your physician. You
should monitor the injection site for any
signs of infection.
The radiologist will report the test findings
to your physician. Your physician will
contact you with the results within 2-3 days.
If your procedure is performed on an
emergency basis, the radiologist will call the
report to your physician and you will be
notified of the results as soon as possible
after the examination is completed.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Contact the Radiology Department
at Jamestown Hospital
1-800-281-8888, Ext. 4852