What is a thyroid
scan is a procedure in which your health
care provider examines your thyroid gland
using radioactive iodine that gives off a
type of x-ray.
When is it used?
procedure is used to diagnose problems with
the thyroid gland.
There may be
some alternative diagnostic studies you
could consider such as CT scan (special
x-rays) and ultrasound (sound waves),
depending on the problem and your condition.
However, the thyroid scan provides
information on how the gland is functioning,
information that no other test can offer.
How do I prepare
for a thyroid scan?
care provider will give you capsules
containing radioactive iodine or another
isotope to take 4 to 24 hours before the
test. Tell your provider if you are allergic
to shellfish or other things that contain
iodine. Also, tell your provider if you have
had other contrast-dye tests done in the
past few months such as a CT scan.
during the procedure?
the capsules, you will lie on an examining
table while a scanner is held near your
neck. The scanner measures the amount and
distribution of radiation in the thyroid.
This information will help your health care
provider understand how well the thyroid is
working. You may have more than one scan
done. Your provider may also use a scanning
device that produces a picture of the
thyroid gland, showing areas where there may
be a problem.
What happens after
care provider will give you the test results
when the complete report is available. You
can go home after the test is completed.
health care provider what other steps you
should take and when you should come back
for a checkup.
What are the
benefits of this procedure?
procedure will help your health care
provider make a more accurate diagnosis.
What is a risk
associated with this procedure?
The amount of
radioactivity given in this test is so small
that it does not pose a risk.
reactions are uncommon for this test, but
discuss any allergies you have with him or
her before the test.
When should I call
my health care provider?
health care provider immediately if you
develop a skin rash after the test.
health care provider during office hours if:
questions about the procedure or its
You want to
make another appointment.
iMcKesson Clinical Reference Products.
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Copyright © 1991-2000 iMcKesson LLC. All
Adapted from content provided
by iMcKesson, LLC
Review Date: 6/10/01