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PET Scans

PET scans in relation to Psychology


on 30 October 2013

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Transcript of PET Scans

Positron Emission Tomography

Historical context
Early 1950's Brownell and Burnham bring about significant development to positron tomography imaging scan.
PET scanner first built in 1961 by James Robertson et al ("Positron Emission Tomography in Neurologic Disease.")

copy and paste as needed and take advantage of an infinite canvas!
Raine et al 1997

Process of PET Scans
Strengths and Limitations
Application of PET
Brief Overview
Why were PET scans developed?
Loessner, A., A. Alavi, K.U. Lewandrowski, D. Mozley, E. Souder, and R.E. Gur. Regional Cerebral Function Determined by FDG-PET in Healthy Volunteers: Normal Patterns and Changes with Age. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: n.p., 1995 PDF File.
"Positron Emission Tomography in Neurologic Disease." - ERADIMAGING.COM: RT CE. ERADIMAGING.COM, 15 Feb. 2011. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.eradimaging.com/site/article.cfm?ID=761>.
"Positron Emission Tomography." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 21 Oct. 2013. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positron_emission_tomography>.
Brownell, Gordon L. A History of Positron Imaging. Massachusetts: n.p., 15 Oct. 1955. PDF File.
Dugdale, David. "PET Scan: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia." U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 11 Sept. 2012. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003827.htm>.
Video 1: UWMedicineHealth. "PET (Positron Emission Tomography) Scan - What to Expect (UW Medicine)." YouTube. YouTube, 20 Dec. 2010. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <
Understanding PET Scans, Alan Waxman, M.D. Prod. SNMChannel1. Perf. Alan Waxman. Understanding PET Scans. YouTube, 13 May 2009. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <
Video 2: Positron Emission Tomography (PET) at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf. Prod. Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf. Positron Emission Tomography at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf. YouTube, 01 Sept. 2011. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <
"PET Scan." : Cancer Research UK : CancerHelp UK. Cancer Research UK, n.d. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/cancer-help/about-cancer/tests/pet-scan>.
"AS Psychology." AS Psychology. AS Psychology, n.d. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.holah.karoo.net/rainestudy.htm>.
Figure 1: "Positron Emission Tomography." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 23 Oct. 2013. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positron_emission_tomography>.
Crane, Hannibal. "The Use of Technology in Brain Research." Psychology Course Companion. By John Crane. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2009. 44-45. Print.
√Stutt, Ginelle. "Methods of investigating brain function - measurement."
Psychology class grade 11. International School of Basel, Basel. Sept.
2013. Reading.
Image 2:PET/CT Scans and Brain Disorders. Digital image. Northern California PET Imaging Center. Northern California PET Imaging Center, 2010. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.norcalscans.org/ClinicalInformation/BrainDisorders/>.
PET Scans are a useful diagnostic tool. (Crane, 45)
It allows one to be able to locate specific areas of interest on a particular patient and in gathering data on present treatments and conditions of patients, as well as determining what treatments to use (UWMedicineHealth).
Detailed knowledge of the structure and function of the brain
A PET scan may take place whilst a patient is conscious (UWMedicineHealth)
A PET scan can be used at the same time as other scanning techniques such as Computer Tomography images (UWMedicineHealth) This is useful as it is more time efficient.
Limited amount of radiation in a PET scan (UWMedicineHealth)
PET scans are expensive.
PET scans are difficult to interpret and require radiologists.
PET scans are also less precise than other scanning techniques such as fMRI (Crane, 45)
PET scans are sensitive to disruptions such as movements (Cancer Research UK)
Radiation risk.
One may have to question ecological validity of the interpretation of the PET scan, especially as there are a multiple of reasons for the brain areas to activate.
What happens in the body in order for the PET scan to detect cancerous tissue?
Gur et al 1995
To determine
To determine how aging impacts metabolism in different regions of the brain.
Pet scans compromised from the volunteers of the sample group were compared and analyzed using a qualitative scale.
Age affected the metabolism in certain regions of the brain such as in the frontal lobes.
However metabolism in some regions were unaffected by age:.Basal ganglia, hippocampal area, thalami, cerebellum, posterior cingulate gyrus and visual cortex
In certain regions no patterns or conclusion in metabolism could be linked with age as they varied with patients. These regions included temporal, panetal and occipital lobe

Positron = “an elementary particle having the same mass and spin as an electron but having a positive charge equal in magnitude to that of the electron's negative charge; the antiparticle of the electron.”

Tomography = a machine for making an x-ray of a selected plane of the body
Way of looking at organ function and cellular function, and sub cellular function.
Figure 1
Video 1
Video 2
Image 2
To investigate cortical and subcortical brain functioning in murderers pleading ‘not guilty for reasons of insanity’ (NGRI) via PET scans and imaging.

The NGRI sample and control participants were divided into groups and their PET scans were compared.
The researchers discovered that the NGRI participants were found to have less activity in their prefrontal and parietal areas but more in the occipital areas and temporal area. Their subcortical areas had less activity in the corpus callosum and generally found an imbalance of activity between the two hemispheres in three other subcortical structures. In comparison to the controls, the NGRI group had less brain activity in left side rather than the right of the amygdala and hippocampus. They also had more activity in the right side of the thalamus but no change in its left side.

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