Segmental Tc-99m bone scintigraphy

What is it?

The examination allows to obtain images of the skeleton showing the bone metabolism through the intravenous administration of a radiopharmaceutical that attaches to the bone in proportion to its rotation.

The scintigraphy highlights the alteration before the radiography, because the fixation of the radioactive tracer is based on the metabolic alteration and not on the structural changes of the bone that occur later.

When is this exam indicated?

  • In pre-surgical staging and monitoring of neoplasms;
  • To verify presence, location and number of metastases;
  • To investigate the extent of primary bone neoplasms;
  • To investigate the extent of Paget's disease, ankylosing spondylitis;
  • To study bone polytrauma, periosteal contusion, poor consolidation of traumatic fractures;
  • To verify the reasons of bone pain for patients with normal radiography;
  • To study inflammatory diseases with bone involvement (rheumatoid arthritis, sacro-ileitis, etc).   

How is it performed?

The examination enables to detect bone alteration areas through the use of osteotropic radiopharmaceuticals (technetium 99m-marked diphosphonates), which accumulate in greater quantities in pathological areas than in healthy tissue.

The duration of the examination is approximately 3 hours.

It is recommended to take 2-3 glasses of water after the intravenous administration to facilitate the elimination of the radiopharmaceutical.


Allergic reactions, especially of the urticarial type, may occur rarely.

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