Ct-scan/bone scan question

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 7270
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:01 AM (GMT -6)   
Howdy. I may be heading towards SRT. I am also still having quite a bit of tailbone pain and some urinary track issues (fully continent, but some burning and weak stream -- that might be a minor infection).
I have a question:
Do they normally do a bone scan/CT Scan before doing SRT (I have not had one done). Even if they don't, perhaps they might want to do it due to my tailbone pain.
Another question:
What is the CT Scan and bone scan like? Would I have to do bowel prep? Do they inject stuff and then take pictures? Or...???
PSA-- 3/08--2.90; 8/09--4.01; 11/09--4.19 (PSAf: 24%), PCA3 =75 .
Biopsy 11/30/09. Gleason 4+3. Stage: T1C. Current Age: 64
Surgery: Dr. Menon @Ford Hospital, 1/26/10.
Pathology Report: G 4+3. Nodes: Clear. PNI: yes. SVI: No. EPE: yes. Pos. Margin: Yes-- focal-- 1 spot .5mm. 100% continent by 3/10. ED- in progress. First post-op PSA on 3/10/10-: 0.01. PSA on 6/21/10--0.02. 9/21/10--0.06

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 966
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:43 AM (GMT -6)   

I am sure they will perform a couple of different scans depending on what your psa is doing. I had the bone scan prior to surgery for a base line and what they do is inject a radioactive dye into the blood that will adhere to bone changes. Then you wait about 2-4 hours before actually being scanned.

But as you already know, not very accurate at low psa readings...but doctors do it anyway.

CT scan I haven't had, but I would imagine they will do one of those too before SRT to help map out the area being radiated.

Keep the search going...lots of questions and lots of different answers.
You are beating back cancer, so hold your head up with dignity


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Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 7084
   Posted 9/28/2010 1:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Look at my IGRT thread. They did a CT scan with my bladder full to use in planning the radiation doses. There was no request for specific bowel prep / enema, just that I made sure I had my morning constitutional before I came. I had been on stool softeners already, so that was not a problem.
No bone scan related to IGRT - they did that before surgery.
My IGRT journey -

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 338
   Posted 9/28/2010 2:23 PM (GMT -6)   

Have had several bone scans and many CTs. Not all related to PCa but had bone scan last week and it showed some hot area in
the T8 amd T9 with pain radiating across the lower ribs. First Visit to oncologist considered it arthrites. Got a call today and now he wants me to have CT scheduled for next week. I remain confident as my PSA is at the bottom. My new Urologist agrees that it would be rare for METS with a PSA of <.1 for the past 2 and 1/2 years. gotta stay positive with the home in LA for sale and staying a lot
in the RV in Austin, TX. Will not let this thing stop me from traveling any longer. Will winer here as 7 grand kids are here. Come Jan, watch out for a Gold/Tan Ford Dually and a Mobile Scout Fifth Wheel. I have not been coming her much but read my journal to see why. God Bless you all and stay positive.


Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 308
   Posted 9/28/2010 3:06 PM (GMT -6)   
echoing another's previous reply: before SRT: no bone scan since PSA was still pretty low, but CT scan with full bladder so they know how to aim the big machine [this is when you get your tatto dots], and after the radiation started, a followup CT scan every month or so, i guess to verify that the target area hadn't shifted around
no big deal..
Age@dx: 55
5/05 PSA: 1.8 ;12/07 PSA: 3.7 ;7/08 PSA:4.7
8/08 Biopsy1: 3 of 6 irreg
11/08 PSA: 6.5; 12/08 Biopsy 2: of 12, 3 cancer, other 9 irreg; Gl:3+3=6.
1/22/09 RRP; 1/25/09 Released; 1/28/09 Pathology: Cancer on 10% of gland, lymph & SV were benign, Gl re-typed 3+4=7, stage T2c
2/13/09 PSA:0.1
3/9/09 back to work
6/09 PSA:0.1; 10/09 PSA:0.1; 2/10 PSA:0.3 ; 4/10 PSA:0.4 Referred to RO
5/4/10 First RT.;6/25/10 Final RT. ended up 36 treatments, 64.8 Gy.
8/10 PSA:0.2

Ed C. (Old67)
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 2461
   Posted 9/28/2010 4:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I had both CT scan and bone scan before my RRP. No rep was needed for the CT scan but they did inject me with some radioactive liquid before the bone scan to get a baseline.
Age: 67 at Dx on 12/30/08
PSA 9/05 1.15; 8/06 1.45; 12/07 2.41; 8/08 3.9; 11/08 3.5 free PSA 11%
2 cores out of 12 were positive Gleason (4+4) and (4+5)
Negative CT scan and bone scan done on 1/16
Robotic surgery performed 2/9/09 Dr Fagin, Austin TX
Prostate weighed 57 grams size:5.2 x 5.0 x 4.9 cm
Posterior lateral lesions measuring 1.5 x 1.4 x 1.0 cm showing focal capsular penetration over a distance of 3mm in circumference.
Prostatic adenocarciroma accounts for approx. 10-20% of the hemisphere.
Gleason 4+4
both nerve bundles removed,
pT3a Nx Mx, Negative margins
seminal vesicles clean, lymph nodes: not dissected
continent after 5 months
2 months PSA test 4/7/09 result <0.1
5 months PSA test 7/9/09 result <0.1
8 months PSA test 10/9/09 result <0.1
11 months PSA test 1/21/10 result 0.004
14 months PSA test 4/19/10 result 0.005

Don K.
Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 9/28/2010 10:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Bone Scans:
My tech was proud of his new machine and explained how it works to me.
Radioactive iodine (low dose, half life 12 hours) is injected via IV. Wait for two hours for the RI to get to the bones, then scan.
The machine is nothing more than a huge geiger counter. It prints out a picture showing the skelaton in color no less.
No strain, no pain (other than the IV)
Don K.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1804
   Posted 9/29/2010 5:53 AM (GMT -6)   
Mel, John had a CT scan when first diagnosed...he couldn't eat that day and was not a happy camper. After having some white stuff injected into him and waiting about 20 minutes, the test itself was quick and easy. The results were sent to his uro/surgeon with who we had a consultation immediately following the CT scan. No bone scan was needed since John's PSA pre-surgery was below 10 and the uro said it wouldn't show anything.

When his PSA bumped up last summer/fall, it was off to the hospital for another CT scan and a bone scan. The bone scan was ordered by the rad onc in consultation with the surgeon...this was done just to be sure but both felt it wouldn't show anything. The bone scan did show a "hot spot" on the right shoulder, so the hospital ordered another CT scan which came back fine (bone scans will show just about every injury as well as arthritis). I hope he doesn't need another CT scan for a long, long time as I really don't like the idea of them. I don't remember any special prep for either of these tests but he did have the contrast dye injected into him.

CT scans are done with and without contrast...the contrast comes from that stuff they inject in you. We were told by the nurse to drink lots and lots of water after the CT scan as the iodine they use is not easy on the kidneys.

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 364
   Posted 9/29/2010 7:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Mel:  It depends what the CT is used for.  Lets say you were having a pancreatic protocol CT, you would prep with barrium the night before and be injected with dye as the scan was being done.  Although the barrium tastes like chalk it does help highligjt anything in the ab/pelvis.
More than likely you will only have the dye injected as the CT is being done, it is injected through an IV port that is set up before the scan.
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