St Vincent's Clinic Medical Imaging & Nuclear Medicine

Gastric Emptying Scan

Gastric Emptying scan looks at how well your stomach digests food.

What will happen when you have your Gastric Emptying Scan

When you arrive in the Nuclear Medicine department you will be asked to eat an egg sandwich which has a small amount of a radioactive tracer attached to the egg. This will not make the sandwich taste any different and you should not feel unwell from the sandwich. Once you have finished eating, images of your abdomen will be taken for approximately 1 hour. You will then need to return to the department 1 hour, 2hours and 3hrs later for approximately 15 minutes each time. You are required to remain fasting during the interim.

What you need to do and how to prepare for the test

You will not be required to undress for the scan. The scan is performed with the Gamma Camera close to your body but you do not go through a “tunnel”

  • You will need a referral from your doctor
  • You will need an appointment for this test
  • You will need to fast for 6 hours before the test
  • You can take your medications as instructed by your doctor
  • Diabetic patients must withhold their medication on the morning of their test but are required to bring that medication to the test.
  • You will need to allow up to 5hours to complete the test.
  • Please bring any previous relevant X-rays or scans to your appointment
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