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What is the point of having PET/Scans, MRI or any other Scan
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kiwiallright posted:
HI All,

This is my question, what is the point of having all of these scans. Last year I had one PET/Scan,four MRI that included two lumbar spine, one of the hips and one of the pelvis, then a CT scan of my lungs last week. In 2011 I had two MRI and two PET scans and what is so funny is I could never figure out what they are telling me. With a PET scan if you do not light up like a light bulb, all is good. I mean they do not mention that there are per say lesions in all of your bones, or anywhere else. I mean after having what six MRI I did not know that the lesion where in my bone marrow, it seems everyone else did, because I did not understand the terminology of what they were seeing. I had a CT scan of my lungs last Saturday, they were looking for blood clots, I was at the emergency room and guess what the Dr was more concerned with where all the lesions in my thoracic vertebral levels consistent with metastatic disease that showed up on the scan of my lungs. In February I am off for another PET/Scan and it will be of great interest to me to see what they mention.
I truly love it when they use the words, "in comparison too or compared with or what was seen on the previous scan" but it is not noted on the report.
I am curious as to what your thoughts are about the results of your scans and are they worth it or should I proceed blindly and not worry about knowing if anything new has developed, my guess is the cancer will let me know if it is there, for me additional pain is the cancer letting me know that it is still moving around.

I hope all is well and that this year will be a good one for you.

Love to all

Mary
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mhall6252 responded:
Mary,

The PET/CT scans are a way of tracking whether or not your treatment plan is working. I want to know, my oncologist needs to know so she can make changes if necessary. I do not have any pain, but I have lung and chest mets, and brain mets. I'm pretty sure I don't want to wait until it hurts to find out what's happening. But that's me. You could ask your oncologist to not review the results with you. I, for one, always get a copy of the written report plus I look at the scan pictures so I can see where my cancer is growing or shrinking.

In my opinion, knowledge is power and I can't imagine not knowing what's going on.

Hugs,
Michelle
Michelle
Read my blog at www.mch-breastcancer.blogspot.com
Smile and the world smiles with you!
 
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brcansur responded:
Mary,
Hello, I was thinking about you again the other day and wondering how you are doing. So nice to see you on the board. I don't get the whole thing about these scans either my onc doesn't do them unless I am having issues of some kind.But others I talk to get them at least once a year. My onc says she doesn't want to do more then needed I have had enough test and things put into my body why add more if not needed. I agree with her there but at the same time should I have them to know if there is any cancer coming back that is the thing I don't really understand. I do get all the blood work done every 4 months and it is coming back very good. But I have a friend that gets pet scans every 6 months due to the kind of cancer she has and that it is spreading. So I guess it depends on your doctor and the cancer. I also have no idea on how to read the results and they say one thing to you and the report says something so different that I don't understand it at all.
I myself get the scans when having isuues because I want to know what is going on inside me so I can make a plan of action. I am one of those people that has to feel like I am in control of my body and the care of it to stay healthy. If I can't do that then nobody can so I have to say ok lets get this done and make sure it isn't anything before we move on. I also want them to be up front with me and tell me what they see don't hide or hold back anything. Because I can't make a plan if I don't know the whole truth. That is my personal thoughts on scans and MRI's. But everyone is different and sometimes you have just had enough with test and say ok I am done lets just take a nbreak and see what happens. That is ok too you are the only one that knows what is right for you and only you can say what you want and should do for you. So what you decide to do is the right thing to do for you. Have a great day and I hope you are having a great new year angel hugs Roberta,
Roberta
 
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kiwiallright replied to brcansur's response:
HI Roberta and Michelle,
Thank you for your responses, I am doing good, I think I may have written what I was trying to say wrong. I get frustrated with with the Dr's when they read them and write what they see then, when you have another one they are mention something that was seen on the previous scan but the radiologist who read the previous scan did not mention it and when I get to the oncologist, he basically says there is no change but the radiologist has mention this and that. When I ask if I can actually see the scan they have a small computer screen that show literally nothing because ones body is bigger than the computer screen. I think the TV Dr's have it down pat, they have those big screens hanging on the wall and that show all, truly would like to know how they get those xrays to look like you have a brain tumor when they are only actors..

Like I said it is the frustrations of how the results are presented, and yes I have copies of every report. My daughter is dating a Dr so I just send all the results to him and he when he can tells me what all those big words mean.

I hope that things are going good for you all .

Love to all

Mary
 
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mhall6252 replied to kiwiallright's response:
When I have a scan, I leave the scanning center with a DVD of the scans. There is a viewer included, so I can look at the pictures on my computer on my own time. Just let the technician know you want a copy and they will give it to you before you leave (you might have to wait a couple of minutes). For your past scans, go to the medical records department and request copies of everything you want. You are entitled...
Michelle
Read my blog at www.mch-breastcancer.blogspot.com
Smile and the world smiles with you!
 
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brcansur replied to kiwiallright's response:
Mary,
I am happy to hear you are doing good oh and about writing what you were trying to say wrong. Oh don't worry about that I have done that a lot my self even say thing backwards a lot since chemo lol. I just say oh that darned chemo brain of mine is at it again and laugh it off. What else can we do ah.
But i agree I too get very frustrated with all the terms and big words that some doctors tend to use when going over all your test. I have just asked them please just tell me in english please what it all means so I can understand and decide what I need to do now to make things better. I am going tomorrow for an CT scan of my chest and will get my results Fri my onc is usually very good at telling me point blank at what she sees. No big words all so I understand her and know what is going on. But some of the others not so easy I have to push and pull at them to get what is going on or call my onc or breast care doctor to get the results and go over them with me. We shouldn't have to do that we should get it up front and so we understand right from the start. There should also be a big screen so we can see the scnas whole picture not just a little screen that shows nothing really. Oh well we can go on and on about this one for ever lol.lol. We have a lot that we could vent about when it comes to doctors and test and results and on and on and on lol.lol. I just wish you the best of Health and the happest new year you can dream up for yourself this year !! Have a great week angel hugs Roberta,
Roberta
 
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kiwiallright replied to brcansur's response:
HI Roberta,

Good luck with your CT Scan, I hope that all is well. I am doing my best to stay our of trouble. Cannot do to much outside as it is so dang cold. Next week I am off to Florida, problem is we are only staying a week. Guess beggars cannot be choosers right. Well I am working on a dream and no sure how it will pan out, but I came up with this bright idea to start a group for those with Met BC, a social worker at the Cancer Center I go too has helped me. The purpose of the group is to give back to the community and to those who need help and support. I am not sure of what the turn out will be, but I can only try.

Take care and I hope that all is well with you and that nasty ole cancer takes a hike!!!!!

Mary
 
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brcansur replied to kiwiallright's response:
Mary,
Oh please do not stay out of trouble that is what makes life so much fun lol. Make sure to have lots of fun for your short trip to Florida better a short one then none at all is what i say. Oh your dream for the new year sounds great giving back to others in need is the best way to start a new year. Then to do that by helping others going through what you are is even better. Because you ahve been there done that and still dealing with it you will understand how they are feeling and not just be guessing. what you have to offer will be coming from the heart. That is what truely counts and really helps out of all the groups I have gone to those are the ones that have helped me most. The ones that other women that have been there and done that and shared it with the group that really has helped me. Then when I can share with someone else that ask me how it was for me going through it and all the different surgeries and chemo I proudly answer them. Because I know if I can help just one person it is worth it. So I am saying good for you and thank you for being there and doing this to help others that may need it. You are a very strong and brave women to take this on good luck my friend I am sending you loads of angel hugs to help you along the way. Roberta,
Roberta
 
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