10 doctors weighed in:

What is the difference between a pet scan & a CT scan?

10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Guido Davidzon
Nuclear Medicine
5 doctors agree

In brief: Metabolism & Anatomy

A pet scan is use to evaluate metabolic processes in your body.
Currently pet scans are most commonly use to evaluate the glucose metabolism to assess the activity of neoplasms by capturing gamma photons . For this purpose a radioactive form of sugar is injected in the patient. In ct scans external x-rays are use to produce an anatomic image of the body to evaluate size, shape, etc.

In brief: Metabolism & Anatomy

A pet scan is use to evaluate metabolic processes in your body.
Currently pet scans are most commonly use to evaluate the glucose metabolism to assess the activity of neoplasms by capturing gamma photons . For this purpose a radioactive form of sugar is injected in the patient. In ct scans external x-rays are use to produce an anatomic image of the body to evaluate size, shape, etc.
Dr. Guido Davidzon
Dr. Guido Davidzon
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Dr. Joseph Accurso
Radiology
2 doctors agree

In brief: Anatomy vs Physiolog

Ct scans look at the structure of the body, the anatomy, and the way diseases change or distort it.
Pet looks at the physiology, or how the body uses, or metabolizes something. For pet, the most common metabolism pathway looked at is how glucose is used. A low dose ct is often acquired at the same time as the pet (as in pet/ct scan), to correlate the pet findings with the ct anatomy.

In brief: Anatomy vs Physiolog

Ct scans look at the structure of the body, the anatomy, and the way diseases change or distort it.
Pet looks at the physiology, or how the body uses, or metabolizes something. For pet, the most common metabolism pathway looked at is how glucose is used. A low dose ct is often acquired at the same time as the pet (as in pet/ct scan), to correlate the pet findings with the ct anatomy.
Dr. Joseph Accurso
Dr. Joseph Accurso
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Dr. Gerald Mandell
Nuclear Medicine

In brief: Anatomic/physiologic

Pet scan involves intravenous injection of radio tracer usually f18 fdg.
Imaging of whole body occurs for localization of areas of increased glucose metabolism. Malignant tumors usually most active.Ct scan involves x-ray and performs anatomic imaging of parts of body usually head, chest, abdomen, pelvis, or extremities. Pet?Ct combines imaging modalities for anatomic localization of areas of uptake

In brief: Anatomic/physiologic

Pet scan involves intravenous injection of radio tracer usually f18 fdg.
Imaging of whole body occurs for localization of areas of increased glucose metabolism. Malignant tumors usually most active.Ct scan involves x-ray and performs anatomic imaging of parts of body usually head, chest, abdomen, pelvis, or extremities. Pet?Ct combines imaging modalities for anatomic localization of areas of uptake
Dr. Gerald Mandell
Dr. Gerald Mandell
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Dr. Maureen Nash
Psychiatry - Geriatric

In brief: PET is functional

A pet scan tells us which cells are taking up glucose which is a measure of functioning.
Cancer cells take up too much glucose and other illnesses like dementia have cells that do not take up enough glucose. A ct scan is a structural test and shows the outlines of cells and how big they are. Cts are useful for looking at bones and other sources of calcium.

In brief: PET is functional

A pet scan tells us which cells are taking up glucose which is a measure of functioning.
Cancer cells take up too much glucose and other illnesses like dementia have cells that do not take up enough glucose. A ct scan is a structural test and shows the outlines of cells and how big they are. Cts are useful for looking at bones and other sources of calcium.
Dr. Maureen Nash
Dr. Maureen Nash
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