How It Is Done continued...
You will lie on your
back on a table. Your penis will be taped to your belly to keep it out of the way of the scan. A sling or towel may be used to support the
testicles under the scanner. After the tracer is injected, the
camera will scan for radiation released by the tracer. The camera produces pictures of
the tracer in your testicles. Two scans are done about 15 minutes apart. You
need to lie very still during each scan to avoid blurring the pictures. The
camera does not produce any radiation. You are not exposed to any more
radiation while the scan is being done.
The scan takes
about 45 minutes.
How It Feels
You may feel nothing at all from the
needle puncture when the tracer is injected. Or you may feel a brief sting or
pinch as the needle goes through the skin. Otherwise, a testicular scan is
usually painless. You may find it hard to stay still during the
scan, especially if your testicles are sore. Before the scan, ask for a pillow or blanket to
make yourself as comfortable as possible.
Allergic reactions to the radioactive tracer are rare. Most of the tracer will leave your body (through your urine or stool) within a day. So be
sure to flush the toilet right after you use it. And wash your hands well with soap and
water. The amount of radiation is small. This means it isn't a risk for people to
come in contact with you after the test.
You may get some
soreness or swelling at the injection site. This can
usually be relieved by putting a warm, moist cloth on your arm.
There is always a very slight risk of damage to cells or tissue from
being exposed to any radiation. This includes the low level of radiation released
by the tracer used for this test.