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Gall bladder (HIDA scan / cholescintigraphy)

Gallbladder scans are used to evaluate upper abdominal pain, determine causes of jaundice and identify obstruction in the biliary system.

Test Preparation

Please inform us if you are pregnant or if you think you are pregnant.

For the gallbladder scan, you may be asked to:

  • Not eat or drink for 2 - 4 hours before the test because contents in the stomach will alter the test results.
  • Stop taking current medications because certain drugs affect how the tracer flows through the biliary tract.
  • Remove metal accessories as they may interfere with the study.

Exam Procedure

Gallbladder Scan

After injection of a tracer into the vein, you will lie on your back on the imaging table and multiple images of the abdominal area will be taken.

Images are obtained immediately after the injection.  This process takes 1 - 2 hours, or possibly longer.

Gallbladder Scan in Children

The procedure is the same as for adults, except that children under age 3 may require sedation. Also, the imaging time for children is not as long, lasting 45 minutes to 1 hour.

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