What is scintimammography?
A Scintimammography study (Breast-Specific Gamma Imaging) is a Nuclear Medicine exam. The patient is injected with a small amount of Radioactive Material (sestamibi) into the arm. This works on a cellular or metabolic level to help differentiate cancer from other benign structures in the breast. Normal breast cells will take up little of the radioactive material, while active cells will take up more, which can indicate cancer. A Scintimammography exam can aid the Radiologist when the patient has dense breast tissue, has a suspicious area on a mammogram, lumps that can be felt but not seen on mammography or Ultrasound, Implants and scarring from previous breast surgeries.
What should i expect?
A Nuclear Medicine Technologist will inject the isotope into your arm. You should feel no discomfort from the radioactive material. While sitting in a chair the Technologist will take four images, two on each breast. You will be compressed minimally and each view will take 7-10 minutes to image.
How should i prepare?
There is no preparation for this exam. You should however wear comfortable cloths and you will be asked to change into a gown.
When will i get my results?
The exam is shown to the Radiologist while you wait. Sometimes additional views are needed. The Radiologist will read the exam and speak with you about your results before you leave.
Scintimammography is available at the Breast Imaging Center.