Nuclear medicine and molecular imaging are on its leading edge, probing deep inside the body to reveal its inner workings. Unlike conventional imaging studies that produce primarily structural pictures, nuclear medicine and molecular imaging visualize how the body is functioning and what’s happening at the cellular and molecular level.
With the help of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging, scientists and healthcare providers are:
Gaining a better understanding of the pathways of disease
Quickly assessing new drugs
Improving the selection of therapy
Monitoring patient response to treatment
Finding new ways to identify individuals at risk for disease
So what is nuclear medicine? In nuclear medicine and molecular imaging procedures, the energy source is introduced into the body, where it gets incorporated in a specific tissue, organ or process and is then detected by an external device (gamma camera, SPECT or PET scanners) to provide information on organ function and cellular activity.
Because disease begins with microscopic cell changes, nuclear medicine and molecular imaging have the potential to identify disease in an earlier, more treatable stage, often before conventional imaging and other tests are able to reveal abnormalities. With their ability to identify the early signs of disease and other abnormalities, nuclear medicine and molecular imaging offer the potential to change medical care from reactive to proactive, saving and improving countless lives