Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography

Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) is a tomographic imaging technique which uses gamma rays and it provides true 3D information. It comes in the field of Nuclear Medicine. Nuclear medicine is a branch of medicine that deals with the use of radioactive substances in research, diagnosis and treatment. The information which is received is then typically presented as cross-sectional slices, and can be freely reformatted or manipulated as required. This tomography technique requires delivery of a gamma-emitting radioisotope (a radionuclide) into the patient, normally through injection into the bloodstream. SPECT provides improved contrast compared to planar imaging as well as better 3D visualization. If the cross-sectional images are reconstructed, the activity distribution in the organ is seen quite separate. SPECT is also found helpful in finding infections, tumors and stress fracture and also provides information about blood flow to an organ that can determine organ function. The SPECT System is based on Gamma camera detector.  Two types of detectors are mainly used -Single head (detector) SPECT camera on a ring gantry and Multiple Detector SPECT systems with rectangular head shape. Multiple detector is mostly preferred. The main advantages of SPECT systems is to scan the most sensitive parts of the body of a person in case the patient is having serious disease which is in growing stage. It is less expensive than PET scan and is also non-invasive.  Spatial resolution is limited which sometimes leads to misinterpretation in some cases which is the drawback of SPECT Systems.

By -ASSISTANT PROFESSOR – Ms. Prachi Vishnoi
Department -RADIOLOGY
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