Positron Emission Tomography – Computed Tomography (PET/CT) uses small amounts of radioactive materials called radiotracers or radiopharmaceuticals, a special camera and a computer to evaluate organ and tissue functions.
The PET (positron emission tomography) scan is a type of test used in cancer treatment. It can be done along with a CT scan. A PET-CT scan helps to trace the cancer and establish its stage. Before a PET-CT scan, a patient will get an injection of a small amount of a radioactive sugar called fluorodeoxyglucose-18 (FGD-18), radioactive glucose or a tracer. The cells in the body absorb sugar. Areas that use more energy pick up more of the sugar. Cancer cells tend to use more energy than healthy cells. The PET scan shows where the radioactive tracer is in the patient’s body, thus establishing the location of the cancer.