Royal Free nuclear medicine technology introduced

The Royal Free Hospital NHS FT nuclear medicine department has recently installed two new gamma cameras, offering the latest in nuclear medicine technology.

The trust said the cameras will help them expand the department, with the new cameras offing the ability of scintigraphy scans’, tests which provide detailed diagnoses about the functioning of the thyroid, the heart, the lungs and many other parts of the body.

Head of nuclear medicine Danny McCool said: “These cameras will allow our teams to focus more on their patients, as they automate some of the more time-consuming processes that used to demand our attention. It’s going to take us far less time to get the equipment up and running, which means that we’ll have a quicker start to the day, and staff will be able to focus on other important areas of work.

“These cameras are just one part of a long term strategy for extending the nuclear medicine service offered at the Royal Free Hospital. We’re already the largest centre in the country for radionuclide therapy – but we know that with more capacity there’s even more that we could be doing.”

The nuclear medicine department use radioactivity to diagnose and treat various conditions. The scans that they produce are used to understand the function of organs such as the liver or kidneys, and can often pick up diseases earlier than other imaging types such as X-rays.

They also support the treatment of cancer patients through their radionuclide therapy services. This involves using targeted doses of radiation to damage cancer cells.

With their new set up, the team will also have more opportunities for research and development. Danny explained: “These cameras boast a range of exciting new features that we think will help to improve the quality and clarity of the images that we produce. We’re looking forward to exploring these in depth over the coming weeks.”