|March 2015 - PET/MRI scanner|
arrives at Charlton Building
MRI can see the bones and soft tissue, thereby providing a reference for the PET's bright spots. While CT uses X-ray technology to make its image, MRI does not, and contributes no radiation risk. It's noisy and maybe takes a little longer, but safer.
I don't want to make too much of the risk of a PET/CT - some authorities would say that it increases the risk of a later cancer by at most 1 chance in 500 or 1000. Contrast this with the natural incidence of fatal cancer in the U.S. population, about 1 chance in 5, so one CT or PET/CT is down in the noise. Repeated CT's add up, though, so Mayo seems to limit PET/CT's to no more than one every six months, which makes it difficult to follow a patient's myeloma. Hopefully, PET/MRI can shorten that interval.
I've been waiting for months now to find out whether the lesion in my T5 is responding to the current study regimen, so in about two weeks I will participate in the PET/CT - PET/MRI comparison study. I really want this to work, for my own sake and for all other myeloma patients.