PET/CT Exams

PET/CT is a powerful tool in the assessment of non-specific findings detected on X-ray, CT or MRI. Using advanced technology, PET/CT scans are able to more accurately characterize findings, leading to more appropriate management. Continue reading to learn more about available options from Impression Imaging.

Why Use PET/CT?

PET/CT can detect cancers in their earliest stages. PET/CT images the metabolic activity or function of the body’s tissues, often identifying cancerous sites before they can be detected by conventional anatomic techniques such as CT or MR. Consequently, unnecessary procedures or tests that present risk and cost to the patient can be reliably avoided in many instances. PET/CT also aids in surgical planning and radiation therapy planning, leading to more focused interventions at lower risk and cost to the patient while providing a higher likelihood of success.

Available PET/CT Scans From Impression Imaging

Impression Imaging offers the following PET/CT scans to address complications in all areas of the body.


The gallium-68 DOTATATE PET/CT scan specifically looks at the neuroendocrine system and can detect carcinoid tumors. Overall, the scan time can take 20-30 min, but patients should anticipate being at the facility for one hour and 45 minutes.

Prior to the appointment, patients should drink enough water to ensure adequate hydration. There is no need for fasting or restricting activity before the injection.

Axumin PET/CT Scans

These imaging tests are performed utilizing F-18 fluciclovine, also known as Axumin. Axumin is a substance that targets the increased amino acid transport that occurs in many prostate and bone cancers.

The most common tests for the prostate include:

  • F-18 fluciclovine: This PET/CT imaging exam of the prostate is performed on men with biochemically recurrent prostate cancer. Scan time can take 20-30 min, but anticipate to be at the facility for around one hour. To prepare, do not eat or drink anything for four hours prior to the exam. If necessary, medications can be taken with a small amount of water within that time.
  • F-18 sodium fluoride:  The F-18 sodium fluoride is a complete bone scan. The specific scan time is 30-40 min long, but anticipate being at the facility for 90 min. There is no special preparation required prior to having an F-18 sodium fluoride bone PET/CT scan. You may continue to eat normally and drink plenty of liquids prior to and after the scan. If you are on any medications, you may continue to take them.
  • F-18 flourodeoxy glucose (FDG): This scan can be used for the whole body, the base of the skull to mid-thigh and the brain. FDG PET is used for tumor detection and to diagnose brain disorders or infections. The exam time can take approximately two hours. These scans require careful preparation, so be sure to talk to your doctor for specific instructions.

Before Your Study

Before your specific PET/CT scan, there may be instructions to follow. Diabetics should discuss the preparation with their physician before making any alteration to their diet.

The following list covers the general instructions for PET/CT scan studies.

48 hours before your appointment:

  • Do not do any strenuous exercise or deep-tissue massage.

24 hours before your appointment:

  • Stay on a VERY LOW-carbohydrate, NO-sugar diet. Please see Low-Carbohydrate Diet Guidelines below.
  • Do NOT use chewing gum or mints.
  • 6-8 hours before your appointment
  • Do NOT eat anything; drink only water.
  • Drinking water is encouraged to ensure hydration for best test results.
  • Continue to take medications as prescribed (if Empty Stomach can tolerate Meds)
  • If you are diabetic, please consult your doctor for questions regarding diet and medication. Carefully monitor and control your blood sugar the 48 hours before the scan.
  • Low-Carbohydrate Diet Guidelines

Foods allowed:

  • All meats and poultry
  • Hard cheeses
  • Nonstarchy vegetables, such as: broccoli, spinach, green beans.
  • Nuts and unsweetened peanut butter
  • Diet soda and zero-calorie drinks. (Be careful to avoid caffeinated and decaffeinated drinks. Decaffeinated drinks still contain small amounts of caffeine.)
  • Tofu
  • Eggs
  • Oil, margarine, butter

Contact Impression Imaging for PET/CT Exams in South Florida

If you live in the Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Tamarac or Boca Raton areas, reach out to Impression Imaging for high-quality medical imaging exam services today.