Nuclear Medicine

Appling Healthcare is proud to have a state-of-the-art nuclear medicine department, ensuring residents of Baxley, Georgia, and surrounding communities have access to all of the most needed diagnostic tests.

Nuclear medicine is a form of diagnostic testing that helps to determine function/dysfunction of various parts of the body with the utilization of radiopharmaceuticals. Our nuclear medicine tests are read by cardiologists and radiologists with many years of experience.

Testing is available Mondays through Fridays. Appling Healthcare Nuclear Medicine is located within the hospital facility, 163 E. Tollison St. in Baxley. For more information, call (912) 367-9841, ext. 1446. Centralized scheduling: (912)366-6002 or fax (912)367-1200.

Our Most Requested Tests:

Bone Scan (Whole Body, 3-Phase)

A bone scan is a test that uses a small amount of radiopharmaceutical (imaging agent) which concentrates in areas of your bones that are the site of chemical or physical changes. A scanner then detects the radiation creating an image of the skeletal system. The test usually takes 4 hours to complete. Bone scans can help diagnose several problems, including:

  • Broken bones/unexplained bone pain
  • Arthritis
  • Cancer/Metastatic Disease
  • Infection in your bone/tissue


VQ Lung Scan

A ventilation/perfusion lung scan, also called a VQ lung scan, uses radiopharmaceuticals (imaging agents) to evaluate the circulation of air (ventilation) and blood (perfusion) within a patient’s lungs. It is usually ordered if there is a suspected pulmonary embolism (blood clot). A VQ scan may show blood vessel blockages in your lungs and/or can detect regional differences in lung blood flow and air distribution. Doctors may use VQ scans to examine the lungs before some types of surgeries. This test takes 1 to 1.5 hours to complete.

HIDA Scan   

A hepatobiliary iminodiacetic acid (HIDA) is a test used to evaluate your gallbladder by using a small amount of radiopharmaceutical (imaging agent). This agent allows you to demonstrate the flow of bile throughout your hepatobiliary system. It is most often done to evaluate the gallbladder, to measure the rate at which bile is released from your gallbladder (gallbladder ejection fraction). It’s also used to look at the bile-excreting function of your liver and to track the flow of bile from your liver into your small intestine. This test takes 2 to 4 hours to complete.

Nuclear Cardiac Stress Test   

This is a test in which a radiopharmaceutical (imaging agent) is used to evaluate blood flow to your heart muscle while at rest and stress. This test helps to determine if your heart is getting sufficient blood flow whether resting or your heart is under stress (ex: exercised, when a demand is placed on your heart). If abnormalities are found, this test aids in the selection of an appropriate treatment plan. This test takes 3-5 hours to complete. LEARN MORE

I-123 Thyroid Uptake/Scan 

This nuclear medicine exam is performed to evaluate the size, location, and overall functional level of the thyroid gland. The study is acquired using a small amount of radioactive iodine (I-123) which is ingested via a capsule. It is absorbed into the blood stream and accumulates in the thyroid gland in which a special camera detects the function of the gland. The structure of the gland is also determined/visualized with this exam. The exam takes two days to complete. LEARN MORE

Gastric Empty   

A gastric empty test utilizes scrambled eggs/oatmeal injected with a radiopharmaceutical (imaging agent). The patient consumes the eggs and a special camera evaluates the movement of food through the gastric system. Gastric emptying scans are often used to diagnose gastroparesis, a condition in which the stomach’s muscles don’t work properly. This test takes approximately 2 to 4 hours to complete.