Positron Emission Tomography (PET)
A dedicated full-ring Positron Emission Tomography (PET) camera was commissioned in Liverpool Hospital in July 2002, the second publicly funded PET camera in NSW as part of a State-wide service. In March 2006 this camera was replaced by a Philips Gemini GXL 6-slice PET/CT scanner. This imaging technology offers doctors and patients a new imaging procedure that will greatly aid in the diagnosis and management of many types of diseases.
In later part of 2012 the state of the art 128slice GE Discovery 710 - Time of Flight (TOF) PET/CT scanner has been installed with significant improvements in scan speed, and also reduced patient radiation dose and diagnostic accuracy.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) detects and measures glucose metabolism within the body. In cancers and certain diseases of the heart and brain, the metabolism of glucose may be abnormal. By injecting a small amount of radioactive glucose (18F-FDG) into a vein and using a special machine called a PET scanner to take pictures, we can diagnose and assess the activity of these diseases within the body.
Another PET radiopharmaceutical which is used is the 68Ga-DOTA-TATE to assess expression of Somatostatin (sst) receptor on Neuroendocrine tumours (NET).
Computer Tomography (CT) provides detailed anatomical information about the size, shape and location of various lesions and organs within the body. CT uses a thin X-ray beam to image the body in fine, cross-sectional slices. It may not differentiate benign from malignant lesions, or assess metabolic activity.
Combined PET/CT Imaging
When combined together, a PET/CT scan is a very accurate test that can determine the precise location of tissues that have abnormal glucose metabolism, and whether pathological masses have abnormal glucose metabolism. This 3-dimensional information is helpful in determining the extent of cancer spread, whether abnormal tissue represents cancer, whether the cancer is responding to treatment, and differentiate between scarring and recurrent cancer. It can also detect areas of living heart muscle following a heart attack, and locate the focus of seizures in the brain.
A full range of fluoro-deoxyglucose (FDG) PET and 68Ga-DOTA-TATE studies are available to patients. A PET study requires a referral from a specialist medical practitioner. Medicare rebates are available for PET imaging for indications approved by the Commonwealth Government. For more information click "Patient-Information"
For patient preparation requirement please refer to the referral form.