Positron Emission Tomography (PET)

9888 Genesee Avenue, La Jolla, CA, 92037
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Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla
9888 Genesee Avenue
La Jolla, CA 92037 US 32.8846 -117.222
    Visiting Hours
    • 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
    • Visiting hours may be adjusted based on the patient's needs and wishes.
    Emergency Services
    • The ER is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

In the fields of nuclear medicine and imaging, positron emission tomography (PET) has emerged as a revolutionary diagnostic imaging technology, helping in the diagnosis and treatment of many diseases that cannot be detected by other imaging methods. This highly sophisticated technology provides physicians with specific information about the function of organs and cells.

How it works
Prior to a PET scan, a radioactive tracer is injected intravenously and is absorbed by the cells in your body. Cells that are cancerous or abnormal metabolize the glucose in the tracer fluid faster than normal cells. PET scan results show the areas of abnormal glucose metabolism and, consequently, exactly where disease is located.

PET accurately diagnoses the location and stage of malignant disease and non-invasively monitors the effect of treatment. PET also replaces multiple medical testing procedures with a single exam, therefore reducing or eliminating ineffective and unnecessary treatment. PET is not only being used for early diagnosis of cancer, but also for heart disease, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.

At Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, PET/CT technology is used together, combining the physiology from the PET scan and the anatomy information of the body from a CT scan to provide a complete and comprehensive image of the body.

An entire PET visit typically takes about three to four hours, though the actual scan takes much less time.

Contact us

To schedule an appointment for imaging services at Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, please call 858-626-6800.