World’s First Total-Body PET Scanner Takes A Big Step Forward

The UC Davis-based EXPLORER consortium, which aims to build a revolutionary total-body PET (positron emission tomography) scanner, has announced the selection of two industry partners to help build the prototype device. They are United Imaging Healthcare America, a North American subsidiary of Shanghai United Imaging Healthcare, and SensL Technologies of Cork, Ireland.

Positron emission tomography, or PET, scanning uses short-lived radioactive tracers to show how organs and tissues are functioning in the body, while magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) scans mostly show anatomy. PET scans are widely used to diagnose and track a variety of illnesses, including cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease.

How old is too old for surgery?

Not 80, say UC Davis physicians Ralph deVere White and Michael McCloud, in this article about 82-year old Leonard Thompson of Roseville, who recently had major surgery for bladder and prostate cancer. Thompson — who might admittedly be on one end of the bell curve, with a vigorous daily exercise regime — was first recommended for conservative “wait and see” treatment for his bladder cancer, but went to UC Davis Cancer Center for another opinion. Recent research shows good outcomes for octogenarians receiving surgery, says deVere White.