Monday, June 02, 2008

Bone scan day

The entire bone scan procedure takes a long time. First you're injected with a radioactive tracer that settles in your bones. Then you wait three hours, and then you lie still for about half an hour while a big "camera" goes over you and measures the radioactivity in the bones (areas with extra or not enough activity warrant further investigation). The entire process takes about four hours or so.

The radioactive tracer is excreted through the urine, so during your three-hour tour you have to drink a lot of liquids. They want you to pee a lot, too, so it's important to stick around someplace where you can do that.

I'd heard a story about a woman who ended up with a weird "spot" of the tracer on her thigh which ended up being caused by a splash-back incident. I asked the technician about this and she said that this sort of thing happens all the time; they'll either take extra scans or wash the affected spot (or both) to see what's going on. She said that it usually happens to men and that the spots usually appear on their scalps. She also said that the men didn't always clue in right away as to why the technician was washing their head when they were just having a bone scan.

The moral of that story is that if you need to have a bone scan, wash carefully and thoroughly. Every time. :)

Anyways, aside from the boredom, the scan went well. They took the extra sternal scans that they take and that was it. Funny, a lot of people feel warm as the camera sensor moves over them; I do feel that, but I also feel tingling as the camera is over each area. It's very strange and feels like things are rising from the bone through the skin up to the camera above.

Tomorrow is my CT scan. There's less time involved, but also less food and the "wonderful" barium drink.

2 comments:

Monisa N said...

OH.MY.GOD! Men are disgusting!

Anonymous said...

I felt that tingling too when I had a recent bone scan on my foot. The technician just looked at me like I was crazy when I mentioned it, so I filed it away and just a figment of my imagination. Glad to read that someone else has felt it too.