There are many symptoms whose cause could be a thyroid disease: fatigue, depression, sleep disorders, sweating, difficulty swallowing, a feeling of tightness in your throat, unexplained weight loss or weight gain, hair loss and tachycardia are only a few of them. The thyroid gland controls many processes in our bodies. A simple blood sample and a determination of the thyroid hormones can provide information on hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.
- enlarged thyroid gland or a nodule in the thyroid gland (goitre)
- semiochemicals directed against the thyroid gland (antibodies)
Frequently asked question
How does thyroid scintigraphy work?
The functioning within the thyroid gland or individual nodules is evaluated using scintigraphy. After a short-lived isotope has been injected into an arm vein, an image of the thyroid gland is taken. This image provides information on the distribution of activity within the gland. With the result, the doctor is then able to arrange an individual therapy and monitor the course of the therapy through check-ups.
How is the examination carried out?
We inject a small quantity of a radioactive substance into an arm vein. After a waiting time of 20 minutes, the imaging of the thyroid gland is then carried out in a supine position – this takes around five minutes. If the thyroid laboratory values are not available, a blood sample is also taken at the same time that the radioactive substance is injected. If you do not yet have the results of an ultrasound examination, we will compile these before the thyroid scintigraphy.
What should I keep in mind?
You do not need to have an empty stomach for the examination. If you usually take thyroid tablets, you should not take them on the day of the examination. You can take them again after the examination.
How long does the entire thyroid examination take?
The entire examination of the thyroid gland with a case history, ultrasound, blood sample and scintigraphy takes approx. 30 to 45 minutes.
How high is the level of radiation exposure?
The exposure to radiation is 0.9 mSv. In comparison, natural exposure to radiation in Austria is around 2.4 to 16 mSv per year. If you go skiing for a week in spring, for example, you will have a similarly high level of radiation exposure as during a thyroid scintigraphy examination.
How well will I tolerate the examination?
No physical changes are usually noticed. Allergic reactions to the radioactive tracers are extremely rare, since only minimal quantities of substances are administered. You can find more details on our radioactive tracer information sheet.