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Word-class diagnostic imaging in cancer diagnosis in ScanoMed Budapest 


Did you know that the first digital, “state-of-art” PET-CT scanner with clinical resolution is already available in Hungary, as well?

PET-CT is one of the most progressively developing area of the diagnostic imaging field. This examination is a hybrid technology: the already widespread CT (computed tomography) technique and the PET (positron emission tomography) technique, which is spreading in the last decade and a half, are stand together. Unlike other diagnostic imaging methods it provides information not only about the structural changes of the organs but tissue metabolism, as well. These information allow us to specify a disease, its progression, its stage, its severity or even effectiveness of a treatment etc. According to several studies based on the most often performed oncology PET-CT examinations 40% of the cases treatment strategy has been changed thanks to the information provided by PET-CT.

This examination is available in Hungary since 2005. First PET-CT scan was performed in ScanoMed Ltd, Budapest. More than 50 000 PET-CT examinations were performed during the last 13 years, throughout the world it is still a vast examination number.

In the summer of 2017 major development began at Budapest Centre of Scanomed Ltd. which also seriously influences the quality of the patient’s PET-CT examinations. General Electric Company’s latest development - the Discovery MI PET-CT scanner - has been installed. This is the first, fully digital PET-CT scanner with clinical resolution. Discovery MI is a unique PET-CT scanner type throughout the world. It has several hardware and software innovations thus it provides better imaging quality than ever. This new device is outstanding even in international terms. Uniquely in the world the new PET/CT scanner is the first completely digital, research PET/CT camera. With this camera exposure to radiation can be minimized, while the best possible quality images can be made in the quickest possible way.

PET/CT technique is used mainly with the patients of oncology. Our main profile is defining the stage and extension and of the known cancer and the search for metastases. Oncologists plan the further treatment strategy based on these results. And it is also of great use in following the therapy, searching for recurrences, marking the place of biopsy or planning the radiotherapy. During PET/CT check-ups two examinations are carried out quickly following one another: first there is a traditional CT examination, with which we screen the whole body to define the exact anatomy. It is followed by the PET scanning, which is an isotope examination. It means that radioactive material is put into the body, and it will show the pathological lesions. The process is fast and not at all unpleasant. After the injection is given patients have to wait for only an hour. For the sake of accuracy we ask them not to move or talk during that time. Then comes the image making. It is important to mention that patients get radioactive material, so we ask them to be isolated as much as possible for 24 hours, they have to keep away especially from children and pregnant women. That is the time needed for the isotopes to decompose completely. 

For prevention although there is no recommendation yet, it is worth considering such an examination above the age of 45-50, because above that age there is a higher risk of tumours to appear. It is especially recommended if the patient belongs to a risk group, e.g. genetic predisposition (family cases) or previously had contact with carcinogens.

Beside examinations financed by the Health Insurance Company, private patient examinations are available. Of course, with private funding anybody can ask for a PET/CT examination, the price is 240 000 HUF.

ScanoMed Ltd., Budapest is also completely renewed to ensure not just a world- class scanner but also a world-class environment to their patient’s.