Nuclear medicine

The researches find that positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET-CT); is an advanced nuclear imaging technique that combines a positron emission tomography (PET); scanner and an X-ray computed tomography scanner (CT) into a single machine. PET-CT is primarily use in oncology to diagnose and stage various types of cancers. However over the past decade, their use has expanded from oncology to a variety of other disciplines including cardiology. Within Canada, there is growing interest in expanding public funding for PET-CT for cardiac indications, with some jurisdictions providing access to PET-CT for the assessment of myocardial viability; myocardial perfusion, and sarcoidosis.

PET-CT is primarily use

Approximately 45 publicly funded PET-CTs exist in Canada; primarily situated within cancer care centres and hospitals. Patients are typically referr to hospital for PET-CT by specialists. Prior to imaging, patients must avoid consuming caffeine (coffee, chocolate and in medications); for 24 hours and not eat or drink beverages other than water four hours before the scan. The exact duration and procedures involved in the scan depends on the indication (e.g., if a stress test will be performed), but in general the patient will receive an intravenous line for the infusion of radioactive contrast; then be required to wait for a short period of time for the contrast to circulate.

Patients are then require to lie on the PET-CT table and during the scan, hold their breath, stay still, and raise their arms over their heads. The scans themselves can take approximately 20 minutes, depending on how many images are take. Depending on the indication and the severity and stability of a patient’s condition, follow up and interventions (including angiography) may occur directly after or at a later time. The perspectives of patients and their caregivers can support decision making around public provision of PET-CT for cardiac indications by identifying patients’ preferences; values, and the context in which they seek care.

Caregivers can support decision

The purpose of this report is to identify and describe patients’ and caregivers’ experiences and perspectives on PET-CT for cardiac indications.Scanning was an activity fraught with anxiety and worry, from start to finish. Patients, however, drew on a variety of strategies to cope with the discomfort of the scan. Further; scans were seen as important by patients for the ways they revealed what is going on inside of their bodies and could guide decisions on the most appropriate interventions.

Patient-provider communication is view by patients as essential, and attending to patients’ information needs contributed to more positive scanning experiences. Information needs include but extend beyond clinical information (e.g., benefits and risks of scanning; how to prepare for the scan) to information about the process and pathway of attending a scan.