The Usefulness of Brain Scanning

Stanley E. Sneider, MD; Donald M. Dooley, MD
JAMA. 1964;190(11):1012-1014. doi:10.1001/jama.1964.03070240058022.
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THE SEARCH for improved ways of visualizing structures which lie hidden beneath the skin has been a continuous one since Roentgen's momentous discovery of x-ray in 1895. The contents of the cranial vault have been investigated with much success by arteriography and pneumography. The advancement of nuclear medicine techniques has provided brain scanning as a third major tool for this type of study. This paper relates the results achieved with brain scanning at the Baptist Hospital and explores the diagnostic problems associated with this procedure in a community hospital setting.

A number of agents have been available in the past, but wide-spread use of brain scanning, especially at the community hospital level, became not only feasible but useful following the introduction of chlormerodrin tagged with radioactive mercury (203Hg) by Blau and Bender in 1959.1 Given intravenously, about half of the dose is excreted in eight hours. It accumulates


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