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Nuclear Medicine

Nuclear medicine helps to diagnose and treat disease as well as access damage to the body caused by injury. Nuclear medicine exams are relatively simple tests that provide physicians with the size and shape of a gland or organ as well as information on its function.

Nuclear Medicine Suites at Our St. Luke's Campus

Siemen’s Symbia S imaging system:

  • High-definition digital detectors offer exceptional imaging performance and expanded clinical capabilities
  • 3D capabilities
  • Open design enhances comfort for a variety of patients including pediatric, geriatric and bariatric patients, as well as those on stretchers and in wheelchairs
  • Highly efficient design reduces examination times while improving patient outcomes.

Our nuclear medicine imaging systems are ideal for the early detection and staging of cancer, heart disease and other hard-to-diagnose disorders. More detailed than x-ray and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), nuclear medicine detects activity on a molecular level. Patients are injected with a small amount of a targeted radioisotope based on their clinical need. The isotope is attracted to a specific organ or region of the body, highlighting the area of concern. Because of this, a nuclear medicine scan can detect diseases before they progress enough to be identified by other means.

Mohawk Valley Health System is the only healthcare organization between Buffalo and Albany to have this technology.

The Symbia S system is used most commonly for:

  • Cardiac studies
  • Bone scans
  • Hepatobiliary scans
  • Gastrointestinal scans
  • Renal scans.

Location and Hours

Our Nuclear Medicine Department is located at the St. Luke’s Campus and is open Monday through Friday 7am to 4pm. Emergency services are available weekdays 4pm to midnight and weekends 8am to midnight.

Contact Us with Questions and Concerns

For assistance with any questions or concerns you may have about your nuclear medicine test, please call our department directly weekdays 7am to 4pm at 315-624-6173. For any other time, you may call the Medical Imaging Department at 315-624-6116 where someone is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help you.

More Information About Our Nuclear Medicine Center of Excellence

A nuclear medicine exam requires a small amount of radioactive material (also called a tracer or radiopharmaceutical) to be given by injection, by mouth or by inhaling. How you receive the tracer depends on the body part being examined. Some tests require fasting and stoppage of certain medications. Your doctor will let you know if you have to do either of these before your test. The nuclear medicine pictures (scans) are taken at varying times after you receive the tracer. Some exams take about an hour and others can take longer. A few exams require patients to return for delayed pictures up to 48 hours later. Acquiring the images during the scan is painless and usually involves lying flat and still on a padded table.

The person preparing your tracer dose, giving it to you and taking the images is called a Certified Nuclear Medicine Technologist (CNMT). All CNMTs are licensed by the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), have been certified by a Nuclear Medicine Certification Board and have graduated from a state-approved nuclear medicine program.

The American College of Radiology (ACR) has designated Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare, an affiliate of Mohawk Valley Health System, as a Nuclear Medicine Center of Excellence.