PET Scans in Dallas

Our imaging center in Dallas, TX is staffed with highly experienced radiologists who are dedicated to providing our patients with the highest quality of medical imaging services. Our team includes certified radiologic technologists and board-certified radiologists who have undergone extensive training and education in the field of medical imaging.

What is a PET Scan?

Positron Emission Tomography (also known as PET) is a nuclear medical exam that produces a three-dimensional image of functional processes in the body. A PET scan uses a small amount of radioactive material to show differences between healthy and diseased tissue. PET scans produce diagnostic images, which can be used to evaluate a variety of diseases.

About a PET Scan

Doctors combine these tests because a CT scan shows detailed pictures of tissues and organs inside the body. A PET scan shows abnormal tissue activity. So, the two scans together provide more information about cancer.

Common Uses of PET

PET scans are mainly used to examine organs and tissues, other uses for a PET scan are:

  • Detecting cancer
  • Preparing cancer treatment planning
  • Evaluating the brain for
    • Alzheimer’s disease
    • Brain tumors
    • Seizure disorders


What to Expect During a PET Scan

The entire procedure takes approximately two hours and usually doesn’t necessitate an overnight hospital stay. Upon your arrival for the scan, you might be required to:

  • Change into a hospital gown.
  • Empty your bladder.

A member of your healthcare team will inject a tracer into a vein in your arm or hand. You might briefly feel a cold sensation moving up your arm. Following this, you’ll recline in a chair for 30 to 60 minutes as your body absorbs the tracer.

During the procedure:

When you’re ready, you’ll lie down on a narrow, cushioned table that moves into the scanner’s central opening, resembling a doughnut hole. To ensure clear images, it’s important to remain perfectly still during the scan. A PET-CT scan takes approximately 30 minutes, while a PET-MRI scan lasts around 45 minutes. The machine produces buzzing and clicking noises.

The test is painless. If you experience claustrophobia, you might feel anxious inside the scanner. Inform the nurse or technologist if anxiety is bothering you; they may provide medication to help you relax.

After the procedure:

Following the test, you can resume your normal activities unless advised otherwise by your healthcare provider. Drinking plenty of fluids is recommended to help in flushing out the tracer from your body.

During your PET scan you can expect:

  • You will receive an intravenous (IV) injection of a radioactive material.
  • It will take approximately 60 to 90 minutes for the tissue under study to absorb the radioactive material. During this time, you will rest quietly in a private waiting area. It will be necessary for you to avoid significant movement or talking, which may alter the substance’s localization.
  • After the waiting period, you will be positioned on the PET scanner table and asked to lie still during your exam.
  • Scanning takes 30 to 45 minutes.
  • Your daily routine will not be restricted after the test. However, you will be advised to drink plenty of fluids in order to flush the radioactive substance from your body.

Download preparation instructions for PET Scan

Before having an integrated PET scan, consider asking your doctor the following questions:

  • How long will a PET Scan take?
  • What are the benefits and risks of a PET scan?
  • Will I get a contrast medium for the CT scan? How will I get it?
  • Will I need to avoid any activities after the CT scan?
  • When will I learn the test results? How will you tell me?
  • Will I need other tests?

Schedule Your PET Scan at Southwest Diagnostic Imaging in Dallas

Open 7 days a week, Southwest Diagnostic Imaging Center is a full-range, experienced, state-of-the-art imaging center in Dallas. Our mission is to provide unsurpassed patient care, the most advanced diagnostic imaging technology, and the highest standards of quality. If you are in need of a PET Scan, please contact our office at (214) 345-8300 to schedule an appointment today!

Request an Appointment

PET Scan Hours

Monday – Friday: 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m