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PET Scans

Lone Star Heart and Vascular Center

Cardiovascular Disease Specialists & Interventional Cardiologists located in North Houston, Tomball, TX

A PET scan provides valuable information about your cardiovascular health. At Lone Star Heart and Vascular Center in Tomball, Texas, Waqar Khan, MD, MPH, FACC, FSCAI, Alexander Trujillo, MD, and Steven Napierkowski, MD, use PET scans to diagnose and locate heart blockages and other potentially dangerous cardiovascular health problems. Call the practice today or make an appointment online today for expert cardiovascular health care.

PET Scans Q & A

What is a PET scan?

A PET scan is a diagnostic imaging test that uses a special dye to identify disease in your body. At Lone Star Heart and Vascular Center, the physicians use PET scans, the newest and latest technique of diagnosing heart blockages, to identify and evaluate heart problems such as coronary artery disease and heart failure. 

The dye used in PET scans concentrates on diseased or damaged tissue. The PET scanner then creates images that show where the dye has accumulated. 

Why would I need a PET scan?

The doctors at Lone Star Heart and Vascular Center use PET scans to identify the issue causing symptoms, including:

  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Chest pain
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Trouble breathing or shortness of breath
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Profuse sweating

PET scans provide information that complements echocardiograms and stress tests. Your doctor can also use a PET scan to track the effectiveness of treatment.

How should I prepare for a PET scan?

Prior to your PET scan, you have a consultation with your doctor. You should review your symptoms and medical history, including the medications, vitamins, and supplements you take every day. 

Your doctor gives you personalized instructions on how to prepare for your PET scan. In general, they ask patients to avoid eating for eight hours before the test. 

Make sure your doctor knows about any other health issues you have. For example, if you have diabetes, your fasting instructions are different. 

What happens during a PET scan?

When you have your PET scan, the technician begins by inserting an IV to allow the dye to enter your bloodstream. It takes approximately an hour for the dye to work its way through your body and to your heart. You can read, nap, or rest while you wait. 

Then, you lie down on a narrow treatment table that slides into the PET scanner. You need to be as still as possible during the test so the equipment can create clear images of your heart and blood vessels. 

The PET scan can take between 30-60 minutes. The scan is completely painless, and the technician can talk to you throughout the test. 

After your PET scan, you should drink plenty of water to flush the dye out of your system. You don’t need to take any time off to recover and can return to work and other activities right away. 

If you need a PET scan to screen for cardiovascular blockages and other problems, call Lone Star Heart and Vascular Center, or make an appointment online today.