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A hepatobiliary scan is a nuclear medicine test that evaluates:
How Boston Children’s Hospital approaches hepatobiliary scans
The Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging program at Children’s is committed to providing a safe, comfortable and child-friendly atmosphere with:
What is a hepatobiliary scan?
A hepatobiliary scan:
The scan is done to evaluate the function of the liver in making and excreting bile. It also evaluates the drainage system (bile ducts) and gallbladder for possible blockage or malfunction.
A radiopharmaceutical called Technetium-99m Mebrofeninis injected into your child’s veins. Technetium-99m Mebrofeninhas a tiny amount of radioactive molecules in it.
A special camera, called a gamma camera, is used to take pictures of the gallbladder once the radiopharmaceutical has been injected.
When might a hepatobiliary scan be needed?
A hepatobiliary scan can help:
How should I prepare my child for a hepatobiliary scan?
It is helpful to give your child a simple explanation as to why a hepatobiliary scan is needed and assure him her that you will be with him for the entire time.
What should I expect when I bring my child to the hospital for a hepatobiliary scan?
When you arrive, please go to the Nuclear Medicine check-in desk on the second floor of the main hospital. A clinical intake coordinator will check in your child and verify his registration information.
What happens during a hepatobiliary scan?
Will my child feel anything during a hepatobiliary scan?
Your child may experience some discomfort associated with the insertion of the intravenous needle. The needle used for the procedure is small. Once the imaging is completed, the intravenous catheter (IV) is withdrawn and a bandaid is placed over the site of the injection. The area where the injection was given may be a little sore.
Although the camera may appear large and intimidating, it does not touch your child.
Is a hepatobiliary scan safe?
We are committed to ensuring that your child receives the smallest radiation dose needed to obtain the desired result.
What happens after the hepatobiliary scan?
Once the GI bleeding scan is complete, the images will be evaluated for quality. If the scan is adequate, your child will be free to leave and resume normal activity.
One of the Children's nuclear medicine physicians will review your child’s images and create a report of the findings and diagnosis.
How do I learn the results of the hepatobiliary scan?
The nuclear medicine physician will provide a report to the doctor who ordered your child’s hepatobiliary scan. Your child’s doctor will then discuss the results with you.
Department of Radiology
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