A  A  A
Our Services

Our ServicesNuclear Medicine

Nuclear Medicine

Nuclear medicine is used for detection of metabolic activities of organs and tissues. It can identify disorders such as coronary artery disease, early metastases and physiological organ impairment effectively.

In addition to diagnostic services, our department is the only centre in Hong Kong that incorporates a unique facility to provide a full spectrum of Radionuclide Therapy services for treatment of cancer and metabolic diseases. Scope of treatment services include Iodine-131 for thyrotoxicosis, Iodine-131 for thyroid cancer ablation, Iodine-131 MIBG for neuroendocrine tumor, Lutetium-177 DOTATATE for neuroendocrine tumor, Lutetium-177 PSMA for prostate cancer, Strontium-89 Chloride for bone metastases palliation, Radium-223 Dichloride for bone metastases of prostate cancer, Yttrium-90 Microspheres for liver cancer, and Ytrrium-90 Zevalin radioimmunotherapy for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

How can Nuclear Medicine help patients?
  • Heart (myocardial perfusion)
  • Breast (sentinel node mapping)
  • Bone (bone scan and SR-89 treatment)
  • Thyroid (uptake, thyrotoxicosis and thyroid cancer ablation)
  • Kidney (renal DTPA/MAG3 and renal DMSA scan)
  • Liver (liver scan and cancer treatment)
  • Brain (brain scan)
  • Infection (WBC infection scan)

Brain Perfusion Scan is useful for :
  • Diagnosis of dementia
  • Early detection of strokes
  • Detection of decreased cerebral vascular reserve (i.e. risk of stroke)
  • Localization of epilepsy
  • Evaluation of adequacy of collateral blood flow before carotid or tumour surgery
Cisternogram (Cerebral Spinal Fluid Study) is effective for:
  • Detection of normal pressure hydrocephalus which will respond to surgical correction
  • Detection of a cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) leak
  • Checking of any blockage of CSF shunts
Gastroesophageal Reflux Study is useful for:
  • Diagnosis and quantitation of gastroesophageal reflux
  • Differentiation of various causes of achalasia
  • Monitoring progress of treatment of chalasia
Gastric Emptying Study is useful for:
  • Diagnosis of gastroparesis
  • Quantitation of gastric regional motility
  • Quantitation of gastric dumping syndrome
Thyroid Scintigraphy
The human thyroid gland needs iodine to make the thyroid hormone, which basically regulates the metabolic activities of the entire human body. When the gland is overactive, the patient may have heat intolerance, increased irritability, sweating, bowel movements, weight loss and increased awareness of heart beats. We can use iodine-131 for both diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. When there are lumps in the gland, it is sometimes useful to check if these lumps are overactive or underactive.

How do i prepare for the test? What happens during the test?

Treatment for Thyrotoxicosis
The ingestion of radioactive iodine Iodine-131, which is concentrated in the thyroid gland will result in damage to and destruction of some of the cells of the thyroid.

How do i prepare for the test? What happens during the test?

Thyroid Cancer Ablation
Thyroid cancer may be mulitfocal, microscopically or macroscopically, in about 1/3 of the cases. After thyroidectomy, residual thyroid tissue or probable metastases, should be treated with radioactive on same line ablation. This may subsequently lower the tumour recurrence rate as well as later metastases. Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital is the first private hospital in Hong Kong which incorporates such a unique facility for thyroid cancer treatments.
Gall Bladder
Hepatobiliary Scintigraphy
  • Diagnosis of acute cholecystitis
  • Diagnosis of acute acalculus cholecystitis
  • Diagnose of bile leak
  • Evaluation of post-operative biliary drainage
  • Diagnosis of congenital biliary atresia
  • Differential diagnosis of jaundice
Pulmonary perfusion scan is useful for:
  • Quantitation of pulmonary vascular reserve before lung resection surgery
  • Quantitation of cardiac right to left shunts
Pulmonary perfusion and ventilation scan is useful for:
  • Screening for pulmonary thrombo-embolic disease
MIBG or Octreotide Scan
  • Diagnosis and follow up of neuroblastoma
  • Diagnosis and follow up of Pheochromocytoma
  • Diagnosis of carcinoid, tumour
Iodocholesterol Scan is helpful in evaluation of Cushing's syndrome.
Myocardial Perfusion Scintigraphy
Myocardial Perfusion Scintigraphy is a well-known non-invasive means to detect the presence of coronary artery disease (CAD) as well as to assess the severity of CAD in relation to function.

The heart receives life-giving blood from vessels called coronary arteries. If these arteries become partially blocked or narrowed by the accumulation of cholesterol or fat, the heart may not receive the amount of blood necessary for proper function. This narrowing of coronary arteries is often caused by atherosclerosis, one of the causes of a CAD. Symptoms include angina, fainting and panting and in serious case, death. Early detection of CAD is essential for better prognosis.

How do i prepare for the test? What happens during the test?
Renal Scintigraphy
This examination uses radiopharmaceuticals that are freely filtered or excreted by the kidneys. In this way we can assess the filtering function, drainage function, as well as blood flow and gross morphology of the kidneys. This test is also very useful in the evaluation whether the kidney arteries are the cause of high blood pressure in some patients. > View Image

Renal (DTPA/MAG3) Scintigraphy
How do i prepare for the test? What happens during the test?

Renal (DMSA) Scintigraphy
How do i prepare for the test? What happens during the test?
Radionuclide Therapy Strontium-89 Therapy for Bone Metastases
The therapy specifically targets sites of metastatic disease in bone, known and unknown, simultaneously. Strontium - 89 relieves pain associated with bone metastases and acts as an effective adjunct therapy to arrest metastatic bone disease progression. In documented reports, more than 80% of patients experienced pain relief, and the majority had marked decrease in bone pain or became completely pain free. This therapy has fewer side effects.

Bone Scan
Bone scintigraphy is highly effective to identify evidence of metastases and minor change in bone activity. The human skeleton needs phosphate as a substrate in metabolism. An area in the skeleton that works harder (with a higher metabolic activity) requires more phosphate. For example, when a tumour spreads to bone, the tumour cells disrupt the normal bone matrix organization (“eats” away normal bone). The human skeleton then reacts by trying to repair the damage. This repair needs more phosphate than normal bone metabolism. Different tumour cells can cause different rates of bone invasion and skeletal repair is likewise different. Even small repair can be detected and this is why bone scintigraphy can be very sensitive in the detection of early tumour invasion to bone before an apparent structural damage is seen on plain film radiographs. Early detection is important to controlling metastases.

> View Image
Meckel’s Scintigraphy
  • Diagnosis of Meckel’s Diverticulm
G.I. Bleeding Scan
  • Detect source of gastro-intestinal bleeding as little as 0.5 ml/min
Appointment Notice - Gastrointestinal Bleeding Scintigraphy
Liver scan is useful for:
  • Evaluation of liver parenchymal function in cirrhosis
  • Diagnosis of liver cavernous hemangioma
  • Differentiation of liver nodules
Testicular Scan
  • Differentiation of testicular torsion from acute epididymitis