ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Thyroid gland. Gamma scan (scintigram) of a healthy human thyroid gland, seen in the profile of a man. The thyroid gland is a main endocrine gland situated at the base of the neck, and is divided into two joined lobes. A radioactive tracer substance shows areas of activity within the gland: green (low activity); red (high). The thyroid produces and stores hormones which control the basal metabolic rate of the body, influence growth and maturation, and regulate blood calcium levels. Gamma scanning involves introducing a radioactive tracer into the bloodstream, which is taken up by certain organs and detected as gamma rays by a gamma camera.
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