Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Scintigraphy: overview

Contributor(s): Fraser McConnell


  • radiopharmaceutical is a chemical containing a radionuclide (radioactive atom) that is used for diagnostic or therapeutic medicine.
  • Scintigraphy is the process of detection and measurement of the gamma radiation released form the body as a radionuclide decays.
  • The technique is used commonly in human medicine:
    • To assess organ function.
    • For anatomical studies.
  • Images may be dynamicor static giving information about function or structure respectively.
  • Different radiopharmaceuticals are suitable for imaging different body systems and for different purposes.
    • Radionuclides can be bound to chemicals that are preferentially taken up in specific organs.
    • Radionuclides have different half lifes and this property may be utilized in different imaging techniques. 


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Further Reading


Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Newell S M, Graham J P, Roberts G D et al (2001) Quantitative hepatobiliary scintigraphy in normal cats and in cats with experimental cholangiohepatitis. Vet Rad Ultra 42 (1), 70-76 PubMed.
  • Matwichuk C L, Taylor S M, Daniel G B et al (2000) Double-phase parathyroid scintigraphy in dogs using technetium-99M-sestamibi. Vet Rad Ultra 41 (5), 461-469 PubMed.
  • Kintzer P P & Peterson M E (1991) Thyroid scintigraphy in small animals. Semin Vet Med Surg Small Anim (2), 131-139 PubMed.
  • Berg J, Lamb C R & O'Callaghan M W (1990) Bone scintigraphy in the initial evaluation of dogs with primary bone tumors. JAVMA 196 (6), 917-920 PubMed.
  • Metcalf M R (1987) Scintigraphic gastrointestinal bleeding localisation with 99mTc labelled red blood cells. Vet Radiol 28 (3), 96-100 Wiley Online Library.