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PET, A Test Increasingly Requested in Oncology But Limited by Its High Price

If you have been treated for cancer, it is normal that you want to do everything possible to ensure that you do not return. But you may not need the tests, and your risks may be greater than the benefits. Below is the reason:

In general, PET-CT scans do not help people who have completed cancer treatments and have no symptoms.

For most cancers, these tests do not help you live longer or have a better quality of life. If you have the tomographies done without a good reason, they can produce anxiety, wrong diagnoses, false alarms, unnecessary procedures, and more costs.

Often, there are better ways to monitor your condition:

  •         It is alert to symptoms that could mean that cancer has returned.
  •         Get regular exams that include a medical history and a medical exam.
  •         For some cancers, there are simple tests you should do, such as mammograms for women who have been treated for breast cancer.
  •         Ask your doctor what proof, if any, is appropriate for your situation.

PET and PET-CT scans have risks.

Performing whole body PET scans Delhi can contribute to stress as a cancer survivor. Often, these tests detect medical problems that are not serious. This could cause more tests and procedures, including follow-up scans, and even biopsies and surgery.

In addition, PET scans, and especially PET-CT scans expose you to high levels of radiation. The effects of radiation accumulate throughout your life. This can increase your risk of cancer. They should not do multiple CT scans unless there is medical evidence that shows they would help you. Ask your consulted doctor if it is a good idea to have multiple CT scans.

So, when is a good idea to have a PET scan after treatment?

A PET scan or PET-CT scan may be helpful if your doctor suspects that your cancer has returned, based on your symptoms, a medical exam or other tests. A CT scan may also be suggested if you were given treatment for advanced cancer, and your doctor needs to find out if your most recent treatment was effective.

Positron emission tomography (known as PET, according to the acronym in English) is the newest of these non-invasive diagnostic techniques introduced within the field of nuclear medicine. PET brings together the most advanced physics, electronics, and computer engineering, disciplines on which it has depended for its development and implementation in clinical practice. But its use is being held back by the high price of the test.

The latest generation scanners of PET CT scan are not claustrophobic for the patient and allow obtaining high-quality full body images in a reasonable time of 30 to 60 minutes. The PET obtains images of the whole organism thanks to the action of diverse molecules marked with isotopes (radioactive drugs) emitting positrons (subatomic particles), which have been previously injected to the patient by the intravenous route.

 

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4/5/2019 11:46 AM
Claustrophobia is one reason I really don't opt for any of these scans. But these days even for a ligament tear the doctors suggest a scan. Same in the case of cancer screening as you rightly pointed out, many tests may not even be necessary and at times they could end up doing more harm to the patients