ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Gastroparesis. Coloured scintigrams of the stomach of a patient with gastroparesis, a paralysis of the stomach. The scan at left was taken 15 minutes after a meal, the scan at right was taken 2 hours after the meal and shows poor emptying of the stomach contents. Gastroparesis is caused by damage to the nerves that supply the digestive tract. In this case the nerve damage is a complication of diabetes. Treatment is of the underlying cause and changes in eating habits. A scintigram uses the radioactive tracer Technetium- 99m in the meal and a gamma camera to detect gamma rays emitted by the tracer.
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