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Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT)

 

Definition

Emission Computed Tomography is a technique where by multi cross sectional images of tissue function can be produced , thus removing the effect of overlying and underlying activity. The technique of ECT is generally considered as two separate modalities. SINGLE PHOTON Emission Computed Tomography involves the use single gamma ray emitted per nuclear disintegration. Positron Emission Tomography makes use of radio isotopes such as gallium-68, when two gamma rays each of 511KeV, are emitted simultaneously where a positron from a nuclear disintegration annihilates in tissue.

SPECT, the acronym of Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography is a nuclear medicine technique that uses radiopharmaceuticals, a rotating camera and a computer to produce images which allow us to visualize functional information about a patient's specific organ or body system. SPECT images are functional in nature rather than being purely anatomical such as ultrasound, CT and MRI. SPECT, like PET acquires information on the concentration of radio nuclides to the patient's body.

SPECT dates from the early 1960 are when the idea of emission traverse section tomography was introduced by D.E.Kuhl and R.Q.Edwards prior to PET, X-ray, CT or MRI. THE first commercial Single Photon- ECT or SPECT imaging device was developed by Edward and Kuhl and they produce tomographic images from emission data in 1963. Many research systems which became clinical standards were also developed in 1980's.

SPECT is short for single photon emission computed tomography. As its name suggests (single photon emission) gamma rays are the sources of the information rather than X-ray emission in the conventional CT scan.

Similar to X-ray, CT, MRI, etc SPECT allows us to visualize functional information about patient's specific organ or body system.

Internal radiation is administrated by means of a pharmaceutical which is labeled with a radioactive isotope. This pharmaceutical isotope decays, resulting in the emission of gamma rays. These gamma rays give us a picture of what's happening inside the patient's body.

By using the most essential tool in Nuclear Medicine-the Gamma Camera. The Gamma Camera can be used in planner imaging to acquire a 2-D image or in SPECT imaging to acquire a 3-D image.

 

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