Radiating Hope: Radiology Department Blog


Facts About Nuclear Medicine You May Not Have Known 

Post Date: May 12, 2023
Facts About Nuclear Medicine You May Not Have Known 

At Cincinnati Children’s, nuclear medicine is a commonly used modality to image virtually every part of the pediatric body. There are many interesting facts about this field, and below you’ll find eight of them! 

  1. Nuclear medicine is a medical imaging specialty that uses radioactive materials to diagnose and treat diseases. 
  1. The most commonly used radiopharmaceutical in nuclear medicine is Technetium-99m, which is used in about 80% of all nuclear medicine procedures. 
  1. Other commonly used radiopharmaceuticals in nuclear medicine include iodine-131, fluorine-18, and gallium-67. 
  1. Nuclear medicine imaging techniques include single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) and positron emission tomography (PET). 
  1. SPECT and PET are highly sensitive 3D imaging techniques that allow for early detection of disease and the ability to monitor disease progression. 
  1. Nuclear medicine is commonly used to diagnose and treat cancer, heart disease, and neurological disorders. 
  1. Radiopharmaceuticals are commonly administered into a patient’s vein and the body processes the radiopharmaceutical. Nuclear medicine cameras can see the radiopharmaceutical inside a patient’s body. 
  1. The use of nuclear medicine has significantly improved the diagnosis and treatment of many diseases, and it continues to be an important tool in modern medicine. 

How many of these did you know? What did you learn? Leave a reply in the comments below. 

Contributions by Joby MacLean, CNMT; Glenn Miñano, BFA, editor; Meredith Towbin, copy editor

Avatar photo

About the author: Glenn Miñano

Glenn Miñano is a media specialist in the Department of Radiology, providing graphic design, photography, printing, video services, and administration of the department’s online properties. His works have been published in several medical articles, such as the American Journal of Radiology and the American Institute of Ultrasound. He has been providing these services to the Radiology Department since 1996.