Cancer Care Imaging (PET/CT)

Central Mississippi Medical Center now offers the latest innovation in diagnostic imaging with the addition of GE's Discovery LS PET/CT Scanner to its Nuclear Medicine Department. Central Mississippi Medical Center's combined PET/CT Scanner merges images of a patient's body metabolic functions with its anatomic structure to pinpoint the source of many cancers, heart and neurological diseases.

Patients are injected intravenously with a tracer (Fluorine-18 Fluorodeoxyglucose) containing a glucose isotope. After the injection, they are asked to relax quietly for one-hour while CMMC nursing professionals check on them periodically. Then, they are placed onto the bed of the PET/CT Scanner where they move slowly through the two "rings" on the open machine. The entire PET/CT scan only takes about 30 minutes as opposed to the 40 minutes it takes to undergo a PET scan alone. Because the patient stays in the exact same place during both the PET and CT scans, the images mesh perfectly which makes the diagnoses and treatment more accurate.

A leader in the field of cancer care, Central Mississippi Medical Center was the first hospital in Jackson to offer safer radiation treatments including X-Knife radiosurgery. At the Mississippi Gamma Knife Center, CMMC houses the state's only gamma knife for patients with inoperable brain tumors, brain abnormalities and facial pain.

PET/CT scans at Central Mississippi Medical Center can be performed to diagnose lung cancer, esophageal cancer, colorectal cancer, lymphoma, melanoma and head/neck cancers.

Because a PET/CT scan is a full-body scan, it not only offers oncologists a means of evaluating the metabolic function of tumors and other lesions, but they can check to see if a patient's cancer has metastasized so that they can redirect the treatment plan.

Central Mississippi Medical Center's PET/CT Scanner is an invaluable tool for cardiologists as well. If a patient has an inconclusive SPECT procedure, then the PET/CT Scanner can be used for myocardial viability. A PET/CT scanner very accurately determines whether or not a patient has coronary artery disease because the images show if the blood flow to the heart is inadequate during stress, which is often undetected by other non-invasive cardiac tests.

Safe, accurate and cost-effective, the PET/CT scan often eliminates the need for repetitive tests, painful surgical procedures or medical treatments and can diagnose a disease before it shows up on other tests.