Department of Nuclear Medicine - Overview
Nuclear Medicine is defined as that branch of medicine in which radioactive materials (unsealed sources of radiation) are used for the diagnosis and treatment of disease. It is a medical specialty that uses small amounts of radioactive materials, known as radiopharmaceuticals, for diagnostic, therapeutic, and research purposes. These radiopharmaceuticals are specific for the organ, tumor or tissue, which needs to be studied. Once injected into a patient these radiopharmaceuticals localize in the area of interest, which is then imaged using a special camera. Highly simplified, it is something like taking an X-ray from the inside out. Nuclear Medicine provides unique information about both structure and function of nearly every human organ. It is the ability to characterize and quantify physiologic function that makes nuclear medicine different from an X-ray / CT or MRI. As radiopharmaceuticals become more sophisticated, it is becoming possible to see inside of human beings at the molecular level. Nuclear medicine technology is a highly patient-oriented field. It is a vigorous, dynamic field that has seen dramatic growth over the past two decades and is expected to grow even more in the near future. New radiopharmaceuticals and imagining technologies are continually being developed. Diagnostic imaging of the lungs, brain, thyroid, stomach, salivary glands, liver, kidneys, bone, heart, adrenal glands as well as sites of occult infection, is achieved using a sophisticated Gamma Camera with tomographic facilities linked to computer systems. Non-imaging procedures e.g. thyroid uptake tests, GFR estimations and hematological tests are also performed Nuclear medical procedures are safe, both for the patient and the physicians and technologist performing the tests. Patients experience little or no discomfort and do not require anesthesia. Exposure to radioactivity is monitored closely, and kept well below safety limits. The radiation exposure is usually as much and often lower than the exposure produced by a similar radiological study such as CT. The department of nuclear medicine at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals was set up to cater to the need for quality diagnostic services in a professional and world class environment. It is located on the ground floor equally accessible from emergency, outpatient services and the in-patient ward and is equipped with the most advanced State-of-the-Art equipment & technology.