The Image and Intervention Center (BoIC) officially opened

glitterOn Friday 23 September 2016, the Image and Intervention Center at Sahlgrenska University Hospital was finally offically opened.

The new Sterile Center situated in the basement has already opened, and patients have been visiting the Image and Intervention Center for a few months already. Both in the new Radiology premises, in the Intervention facilities at floor 2/3, and in Clinical Physiology department.

– After more than ten years of planning and construction, we were finally ready to welcome patients to our new premises during the spring, says Peter Gjertsson, head of the Clinical Physiology department at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. Patients come to Clinical Physiology to be examined, for example by PET/CT and SPECT/CT cameras. These imaging techniques are increasingly important for diagnosing and treating various diseases, for example cancer, and the demand has been continuously increasing with 10-20 % per year.

– In the Image and intervention center we have two PET/CT cameras, which is twice as many as we had before, Peter Gjertsson continues. We are also planning for a third one. Until now, we have only been using the glucose analog tracer FDG to identify cells that are consuming a lot of glucose, which is often the case with cancer cells.

– Unfortunately the FDG production has been delayed, because the construction work is running late, says Jakobína Grétarsdóttir, responsible for the cyclotron and the new Radiofarmacy Center in the Image and Intervention Center. If everything works out fine, we hope to start the FDG production within about a year from now.

– When the cyclotron is in use, we will be able to produce our own FDG tracers. Today, we buy them from Lund and Finland. Due to the short half-life of the tracers in combination with the time it takes to transport them, we loose several hours of examination time every day. Not only do we have twice as many PET cameras in the Image and intervention center. When we can produce our own FDG tracers, we will also be able to use the PET cameras for several hours longer each day, Peter Gjertsson adds.

– This makes us a lot less vulnerable to delivery delays, for example caused by traffic accidents, strikes or extreme weather conditions, he continues. Another advantage is when it comes to producing new tracers for research and development.

The Region board has made a decision to install a PET/MR camera in 2019- the very first of its kind in the Västra Götaland Region.

– PET/MR has only been available in Uppsala and Umeå, where they got it in 2014. We are very happy about the decision and looking forward to start using it, says Peter Gjertsson.