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High-tech diagnosis, increased accuracy and safety in the results.
PET-CT is an imaging technology that combines positron emission tomography, which produces an image of the molecular function at the cellular level, with computed tomography or CT, which acquires an anatomical picture of the whole body.
To perform a PET-CT study, applied to the patient should be a radiopharmaceutical called FDG-F18, which is a substance similar to glucose. The cells and tissues affected by a tumor have a high consumption of glucose or sugar, so after applying this radiopharmaceutical it’ll be concentrated in a higher proportion on affected cells, allowing detecting them accurately.
The advantages of using this study are reflected in the detection of areas with increased metabolic activity, allows orientation of a suspected diagnosis of malignant tumors and their spread to other organs, helps the doctor decide whether to perform surgery or to treatment conservatively, or determine the suspension or continuation of a specific therapy.
Its applications vary according to the specialty that requires it. For example, in cardiology, it allows highly accurate recognition of the ischemic heart disease at all stages, determines whether there is living tissue after myocardial infarction, and provides 3D images for diagnostics without intracardiac catheters.
In Oncology, helps guide the diagnosis of a benign or malignant tumor, allows biopsy and radiotherapy treatment planning, helps establish the diagnosis, allowing evaluating the surgical or therapeutic decisions, distinguishes between residual tumor and the changes produced by surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy.
The PET-CT in neurosurgery, detects early changes in Alzheimer's disease. In brain tumors, can recognize if there is viable tumor tissue post radiation and chemotherapy. Within the Gamma Knife, detects epileptogenic foci in seizure-like diseases, obtains cerebral metabolic images to see anatomical sites where many of the brain functions lie and helps to rule out Parkinson's disease.
In fact, the application of this procedure in preventive medicine, is not a screening study, however, worldwide studies have been done of this type in patients with a history of breast cancer in two family lines with genetic alterations and disease predisposing to hereditary cancer, such as family-inherited polyposis in people exposed to substances with known cancer cause and effect, as well as in smokers.
This service is available in the Radiology and Imaging Unit within our Médica Sur Tlalpan facilities.