MIBI Myocardial Perfusion Scan (MPI)
Your doctor has asked that you have a myocardial perfusion scan. This pamphlet answers some of the questions you may have about the test.
Purpose of the test
This is a test that uses radioactive substances (radionuclides), in the form of thallium or technetium, to produce detailed pictures of the blood flow to the heart muscle. When the radionuclide is injected into the bloodstream, it travels to the heart muscle through the coronary arteries. A special camera is used to take the pictures.
Description of the test
There are two parts to the test, resting images (pictures) and an exercise test followed by another set of images. The two parts can be done in one day or sometimes on different days.
Part 1: When you arrive in Nuclear Medicine, an intravenous (IV) line will be put in. You will be injected with the radionuclide and about an hour later, you will lie on your back on an imaging table while a special camera circles slowly around your chest for thirty minutes.
The images take about 30 minutes to acquire. After the first set of images has been taken, you may leave the exam room. Because the size of your meal before the second set of images may affect their quality, please eat lightly. Any beverages or medications with caffeine (see list) are forbidden. Caffeine interferes with Part 2 of the test and if you have ingested caffeine, the second part of the test may have to be rescheduled to another day.
Part 2: Your heart rhythm will be monitored with an ECG and multiple blood pressure readings will be taken. You will exercise by walking on a treadmill or if you are unable to exercise adequately, your cardiologist will administer medicine by IV to simulate exercise.
The radionuclide will be injected through the IV line approximately one minute before you stop exercising.
After the exercise portion of the test, images will be taken of your heart.
How long will the test take?
About five hours. Part 1 will take about one and one half hours. There will be a break of 30-90 minutes between Part 1 and Part 2 of the test. Part 2 will take about 1 to 2 hours. Allow 6 hours for parking in case of delay.
What preparation is required?
- Do not eat or drink any products containing caffeine for twenty-four hours before the test. This includes coffee, decaffeinated coffee, tea, decaffeinated tea, soft drinks, chocolate, or cold and pain medications containing caffeine (eg Tylenol #3).
- Do not eat anything at all for at least four hours before the test. If you are diabetic and are taking medication for diabetes, you may eat as you normally would.
- You may drink water at any time.
- Do not smoke for three hours before the test.
- Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes or sneakers suitable for walking on the treadmill.
- Ask your doctor if you should take your medications in the morning before the test. Bring your medications with you if you have not taken them in the morning. You will be asked to take them after the first part of the test.
After the test?
There are no adverse reactions to the injection of given to you. The radiation exposure from this test is similar to having had 2 chest x-rays. You can resume your regular activities.
Where do I go for the test?
Nuclear Medicine, 2nd Floor, Providence II Building
Phone Number: 604-806-8008