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Parathyroid scan

A parathyroid scan allows your doctor to see how your thyroid gland is working and to locate the position of the gland in your neck more accurately.

What is a Parathyroid Scan?

A parathyroid scan is used to localise overactive parathyroid lesions using radioactive tracers. The tracers localise in the thyroid and parathyroid glands and the distribution is detected (scanned) using a Gamma Camera.

What is this scan used for?

A parathyroid scan allows the doctors to see how well the glands are working and to locate the position of the glands in your neck more accurately. This is usually used by a surgeon to help with planning of the surgery.

How can I prepare for this procedure?

  • Please eat normally and hydrate well.
  • If you are taking any medications or have had a contrast injection (e.g. as part of a CT scan) please telephone the Nuclear Medicine Department.
  • If there is any chance you could be pregnant, or if you are breastfeeding, please inform the Department at least 24 hours before your appointment on 0161 495 7040.

What happens during the procedure?

  • There are two appointment times for this scan. Please allow about one hour for each.
  • At your first appointment you will be given an intravenous injection of a tracer, while you are lying down on the camera bed. You will not feel any side effects.
  • You will not need to undress.
  • You will not be totally enclosed during the scan but the camera will be very close to your neck. It is important to keep still.
  • You are free to leave the hospital and return for the scan at your second appointment time – about one hour later.
  • The scan will be similar to your first one, but without injections.
  • We may also do a SPECT/CT scan, where we combine 3D functional information with anatomical information.

Paying for your procedure

The costs of a Parathyroid Scan are covered by most medical insurance policies, but please check with your insurer first. If you are paying for your own scan, please ask for the cost of the procedure to be explained when you book the appointment.

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