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Gastric Emptying

 What is a Gastric Emptying Scan?
A Gastric Emptying scan is a Nuclear Medicine study that checks how fast your stomach empties.

Why did the doctor order the scan for me?
This test is usually ordered when your doctor suspects a delay in your stomach emptying rate or other motility problem.

What do I need to do to prepare for the scan?
You will be asked not to have anything to eat or drink after midnight the night before your test. Please bring your insurance card(s), driver's license and co-pay.

What should I expect when I get to the hospital?
You will first need to check in and register at the Radiology Registration desk located past Mercy Gift Shop, on the left. At that time your personal and insurance information will be updated.  Once you are registered, you will be asked to sit in the waiting area. A technologist will call you and take you to the Nuclear Medicine area. 

Who will be in the scanning room with me?
Your family is welcome to accompany you during the explanation of the test, but will be asked to return to the waiting room during the actual scan.  A nuclear medicine technologist will perform your test.

What will I experience during the scan?
The technologist will ask you some questions regarding your medical history and the problems that you are experiencing. The technologist will explain the test to you and answer any questions you may have.  You will then be asked to eat two scrambled eggs that have been cooked with a radioactive tracer. (You cannot taste or smell this). Along with the eggs will be two pieces of toast and 4.5 oz. of water.  When you are finished eating your breakfast, the technologist will take several pictures of your stomach for the next two hours. These pictures take two minutes apiece and will be every 15 minutes for the first hour and another at the second hour. You may need to come back for a four hour picture.

What do I need to do after the scan?
Following your Gastric Emptying test, you can return to normal activities. 

When will I get the results from the scan?
You will receive your results from your ordering physician.  You may receive a letter, a phone call, or have a follow up appointment with your physician.  If you are unsure of how you will receive your results, please contact your physician's office.

We are very concerned about any anxiety you may have about your exam. We are happy to answer any questions you may have!

If you have questions call:
641-428-7787 or
1-800-433-3883 ext. 7787

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 Mercy Medical Center-North Iowa | 1000 4th Street SW Mason City, IA 50401 | 641-428-7000

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