Most nuclear medicine procedures use small amounts of radioactive material to detect or treat disease. 

Nuclear medicine procedures help diagnose and treat disease using small amounts of radioactive materials called radiopharmaceuticals. You can also get the best radiation protection in nuclear medicine via

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Some radiopharmaceuticals are used with imaging equipment to detect disease. Radiopharmaceuticals may also be inserted into the body near cancer tumors to shrink or destroy them.

Positron emission tomography (PET) is an example of a nuclear medicine method for diagnosing a disease. PET scans use radioactive substances that are introduced into the bloodstream and sent to specific organs. 

Doctors use special cameras to monitor how the tracer moves. Cameras send information to a computer, which takes pictures as the tracer moves through the body. Doctors use these images to identify organ problems.

Radiopharmaceuticals are also used to operate disease by narrowing tumors and destroying cancer cells. During a brachytherapy method, doctors surgically locate tiny radioactive "seeds" inside or near a cancer tumor. The radiation from the seeds benefits the kills surrounding cancer cells.

Several radioactive particles are sensed differently by different organs. For example, iodine is ingested by the thyroid, so iodine-131 is used to diagnose and treat thyroid cancer. 

Doctors select the best radiopharmaceuticals for the parts of the body they need for diagnosis or treatment.