Radionuclide cisternogram

What is Radionuclide Cisternogram?

A Radionuclide Cisternogram is a diagnostic procedure used to visualize the circulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). This procedure combines a radionuclide scan with a cisternogram, a type of x-ray that is used to locate the lining and spaces of the brain that contain cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).

Preparation for Radionuclide Cisternogram

Patients undergoing this procedure will need to prepare just like they would for a regular imaging test. This includes confirming the time and date of the procedure, eliminating any metals from the body, and discussing any health issues that could interfere with the procedure, such as kidney disease or pregnancy.

Procedure of Radionuclide Cisternogram

Before the procedure begins, a special dye or contrast agent is injected into the patient's arm. This dye highlights the area being viewed in the scan. The patient is then placed in a scanner and the radioactive material is injected into a vein in the arm. The energy from the radionuclide is detected by the scanner and a detailed image of the cerebrospinal fluid and its pathways are created.

Types of Radionuclide Cisternogram

  • Single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)
  • Positron emission tomography (PET)

Risks of Radionuclide Cisternogram

The risks associated with a Radionuclide Cisternogram are generally low but can include an allergic reaction to the contrast dye, kidney damage, and other minor side effects. In rare cases, the radiation exposure can cause radiation sickness.

Why a Radionuclide Cisternogram?

A Radionuclide Cisternogram is used to help diagnose certain diseases and conditions of the nervous system, such as tumors, hydrocephalus, and stroke. It can also be used to monitor the progression of diseases of the brain and spine and to check the effectiveness of treatments.

When is a Radionuclide Cisternogram Performed?

A Radionuclide Cisternogram is typically performed when there is a suspicion of a problem in the cerebrospinal fluid of the brain or spine. It can also be used to monitor the progression of a disease, such as Alzheimer’s disease, brain tumors, hydrocephalus, and spinal cord tumors.