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A ProstaScint scan is a test that uses an injection of low-level radioactive material to test for the spread of prostate cancer .
© 2008 Nucleus Medical Art, Inc.
Reasons for Procedure
A ProstaScint scan is given to men who have prostate cancer to see if it has spread to the lymph nodes.
What to Expect
Prior to Procedure
Your doctor may do the following:
In the days leading up to your procedure:
- You will come in 4-5 days before the scan for an injection of radioactive isotope.
- Follow your doctor’s instructions for cleaning out your bowel, which may include taking a laxative or enema the night before your visit.
Description of the Procedure
Approximately 4-5 days after your injection, you will return to the hospital or clinic for your initial scan. For the scan, you will be positioned next to a device that takes images. While the images are being taken, you will be given an intravenous (IV) line and a small amount of your blood will be taken. The blood will be tagged with a small amount of radioactive material and given back to you through the IV line.
The radioactive material used in the scan is attracted to prostate cancer cells in the body. The images can detect areas where the material collects, to find out if the cancer has spread to lymph nodes or other organs.
Most people will need to return the following day for additional images. An IV or blood draw will not be required for the second visit.
Your doctor will review the images, and the results of your test should be available within a few days.
How Long Will It Take?
Will It Hurt?
There are no known complications associated with this test. So far, research has indicated no serious adverse reactions as a result of having been injected with low-level radioactive material for the scan.
A small percentage of patients have had changes in the levels of bilirubin in the blood, changes in blood pressure, rashes, itching, or fever.
Average Hospital Stay
You will be allowed to go home after the test.
There is no special care required after a ProstaScint scan.
American Cancer Society
National Cancer Institute
Canadian Cancer Society
National Cancer Institute of Canada
How is prostate cancer staged? American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/docroot/CRI/content/CRI_2_4_3X_How_is_prostate_cancer_staged_36.asp . Accessed April 19, 2007.
Manyak M. Indium-111 capromab pendetide in the management of recurrent prostate cancer. Expert Rev Anticancer Ther. 2008;8:175-181.
Nuclear medicine exams. Mississippi Baptist Health Systems website. Available at: http://www.mbhs.org/health_topics/nuclear_medicine_exams/prostascint_scan.htm . Accessed April 19, 2007.
Prostascint scan. University Health Care System website. Available at: http://www.universityhealth.org/body.cfm?id=38082 . Accessed April 19, 2007.
Prostascint scan. University of Virginia Health System website. Available at: http://www.healthsystem.virginia.edu/internet/radiology/nuclearradiology/prostanscint-scan.cfm . Accessed April 19, 2007.
Last reviewed April 2008 by Rimas Lukas, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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