Baptist MD Anderson Cancer Center has installed its first SPECT/CT scanner, and the first across the Baptist Health system, at its downtown location. The $1 million scanner creates a detailed 3D visual of the targeted area to allow for more accurate diagnosis and treatment planning.
SPECT/CT allows providers to merge three-dimensional anatomic information from CT (computed tomography) with functional information from SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography), creating an accurate 3D model of the tumor and surrounding tissues. Placing the functional information into context improves the ability of the nuclear medicine physician or radiologists to diagnose active disease and plan a targeted treatment that focuses on the affected area. It also allows physicians to see more clearly if a disease has spread to adjacent tissue.
“From the standpoint of radiation oncology, three-dimensional imaging and data is always preferable to two-dimensional because it allows us to merge it and use it in treatment planning,” said Dr. Michael Olson, MD, PhD, head of the division of radiation oncology at Baptist MD Anderson. “As with PET/CT, the three-dimensional data can be exported and a maximum intensity projection created, which allows easy visualization of a whole scan.”
In addition, SPECT/CT imaging will impact multiple clinical applications including endocrine and neuroendocrine tumors, pulmonary nodules and lung cancer, brain tumors, malignant and benign bone lesions, and liver tumors.
SPECT/CT technology is also used by MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.