Skip links

Positron Emission Tomography–Computed Tomography (PET-CT)


What is Positron Emission Tomography–Computed Tomography (PET-CT)?

PET scan uses radioactive tracers that locate abnormal functioning spots in an organ. It checks important body functions such as blood flow, oxygen use, and sugar metabolism of internal organs.

PET-CT is an imaging technique that co-registers images obtained in a PET scan and a CT scan in one exam setting. Through this, functional imaging obtained by PET, which shows the position of metabolic or biochemical activity in the body, can be precisely aligned with the anatomic images obtained by a CT scan. This technology uses 3D colour images to see how a particular part of the patient’s body is functioning and is often used to complement X-rays or MRI to provide more insights into a condition. PET-CT is often used to analyse the effectiveness of ongoing treatments. PET is often used to investigate Epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer and heart disease.

GE Discovery PET/CT 710

The Hong Kong Integrated Imaging Diagnostic Centre is equipped with the Discovery PET/CT710, the latest PET/CT scanner from GE. The system’s unique design guarantees that in every step of the treatment, the parameters are in line with the PERCIST1.0 international standard. It can also automatically match the results of two scans and accurately measure quantitative parameters such as SUV. The precise comparison enables accurate clinical diagnosis.

Unlike traditional positron emission tomography, GE’s revolutionary precision quantitative PET platform, Q.Clear, has resolved the century-long problem that PET images cannot achieve high-definition images and accurate quantification at the same time. It generates images that are two times clearer and ensures the quantitative accuracy of SUV. The built-in ASiR low-radiation technology allows the person to be examined to perform a full-body scan with the lowest possible radiation dose. This can reduce the radiation dose generated during the scan by up to 50%.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

18-F FDG is a type of glucose and is the most common radiopharmaceutical used in PET scan. An FDG PET scan can be used to assess the presence, location and severity of cancers. To begin the PET procedure, a small amount of FDG is injected into your bloodstream through an intravenous catheter. Glucose is a common substance that every cell in your body needs in order to function and therefore will be taken up by cells. Diabetic patients do not need to worry; it would take 4,000 doses of FDG to equal the glucose in 1 teaspoon of sugar. FDG has a half-life of approximately 110 minutes, so it is quickly expelled from your body.

Other than 18-F FDG, C-11 Acetate is another radiopharmaceutical that use in PET scan. It is particularly useful in imaging liver cancer, low grade lymphoma, and prostate cancer. The preparation for patients to have C-11 Acetate PET scan is similar to that of 18-F FDG PET scan. The patient whilst lying on the scanning couch will receive C-11 Acetate injection, and the scanning will begin shortly after the injection is completed and it will last for about 20 minutes. If dual-tracer (C-11 Acetate + 18-F FDG) scan is necessary, the patient will further receive another dose of 18-F FDG after the C-11 Acetate scan is completed, and the procedure will proceed as for the 18-F FDG scan.

PSMA PET scan is a special type of PET scan used to image Prostate Cancer. PSMA stands for Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen. PSMA PET scan can identify lesions suspicious for prostate cancer when the level of prostate specific antigen is very low. With PSAM PET scan, therapy can be targeted more directly as it can assess the area of the prostate, as well as lymph glands and bones.

A PET scan could provide further insights into a condition. One major application is for staging of cancer before and after the treatment.

No, PET scans are not painful.

If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you shouldn’t take a PET scan as it may pose potential risks for the baby.

Contact us

Have questions? We're happy to help. Send us a message below and our representative will get back to you within the next 3 working days.

By submitting this Form, you hereby agree that?Hong Kong Integrated Oncology Centre?(HKIOC) may collect, obtain, store and process your personal data that you provide in this form for the purpose of receiving updates, news, promotional and marketing mails or materials from HKIOC.

Return to top of page