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Nuclear Medicine Therapies

What are the various Nuclear Medicine therapies available?

Ans : Nuclear Medicine therapies are available for benign and malignant illness.

What are the benign conditions cured by Nuclear Medicine Therapies?

Ans : Diffuse Toxic Goitre or Graves disease is cured by Radioactive Iodine Therapy (RAI) so, is hyperthyroidism due to AFTN (autonomously functioning thyroid nodule).

Does RAI therapy for the above conditions require admission in the hospital?

Ans : RAI therapyfor the above conditions is generally done on Out Patient basis.

Is this therapy contraindicated in unmarried ladies ? Are there any problems with conception post RAI therapy?

Ans : This RAI therapy is not contraindicated in unmarried ladies. conception post RAI therapy is not a problem if the patient is on a regular follow up and has good compilance with medicines.

How is the RAI therapy administered ? Any precautions to be taken post RAI therapy?

Ans : Radioactive Iodine is administrated orally. Some simple isolation precautions have to taken post RAI therapy. These precautions are explained to the patient before hand.

Can the RAI therapy in the above mentioned cases be taken a second time?

Ans : It takes 6 to 8 months for the full effect of RAI therapy to manifest. In a small percentage of patients, the results ar not adequate.
Again, some patients land up with a recurrence after a few years.
In these cases, RAI therapy may be repeated.

Does RAI have a bitter taste? Does it come in a golden yellow colour?

Ans : Radioactive iodine may be administered either as a liquid or as a capsule. Liquid Radioactive Iodine is a colourless, tasteless and odourless substance.

Can Radioactive Iodine be safely administered to children ? Can it induce cancer?

Ans : We believe in administrating Radioactive Iodine to children if the child is not responding to medical management in the above mentioned illness and after ruling out all the risk factors for cancer. At the doses administrated for the treatment of the above mentioned conditions, the chance of inducing a cancer are minimal to none.

What are the tests done prior to RAI therapy for Graves disease / AFTN.

Ans : A nuclear thyroid scan and a thyroid function test are generally done prior to RAI therapy. An ECG may be done if clinically relevant.

Any precautions to be taken prior to RAI therapy in the above mentioned cases ?

Ans : Patient should preferably come fasting for the RAI therapy. Antithyroid drugs have to be stopped for 3 - 5 days prior to therapy.