The term “radioactive isotope” is an umbrella term that covers a range of substances that emit radiation. These particles can be artificially created or naturally occurring. Typically, they are used to diagnosing or treat disease, but there are also uses for these substances. Radioactive isotopes are used as tracers to trace atoms through metabolism. Their uses are wide-ranging. They are useful in medical diagnostics, therapy, and research. They can also measure the thickness of plastics or metals, to test for corrosion, and to monitor various processes. Besides these uses, radioactive isotopes are also used to study the origin of geographical features.
In nuclear medicine, iodine is one of the earliest radioisotopes. The most stable form has an atomic weight of 127 and the correct number of neutrons. A less stable version contains four extra neutrons. Other isotopes include Strontium (Sr-82), Rubidium (Rb-82), and Lutetium (Lu -177).
Iodine is a crucial element in our bodies. Insufficient amounts of iodine can cause a condition called goiter. In nuclear medicine, iodine is one of the earliest radioisotopes. The most stable form has an atomic weight of 127 and the correct number of neutrons. A less stable version contains four extra neutrons. Iodine is an example of an isotope that occurs naturally. It is made from the same element as uranium. However, it is difficult to separate it from the rest of the uranium. This is because the two isotopes share the same number of electrons and have similar chemical behaviors. This means that it is not possible to separate the two forms using chemical separation.
Role of Radioactive Isotopes in Nuclear Medicine
The main uses of radioisotopes in medical diagnostic procedures are diagnosis and therapy. “In developed countries, about one person in 50 gets diagnostic nuclear medicine every year, while only one-tenth of that person undergoes nuclear medicine for therapeutic purposes”. These radioisotopes are produced in accelerators, and are lower quality and more expensive than their stable counterparts. However, the benefits of these radioisotopes outweigh the disadvantages.
Nuclear medicine also uses radioactive isotopes for other purposes. Iodine-131 and technetium-99m are two of the most common. They are used to detect cancer as well as metabolic activity. The radioisotopes are absorbed by bio-molecules with high metabolic activity. The radioisotopes then decay, emitting gamma rays. Nuclear medicine also involves the discovery of new radioisotopes, as well as developing radioisotope-labeled compounds for specific uses.
During a nuclear medicine treatment, ionizing radiation can destroy cells, including reproductive cells. Because this type of radiation affects reproductive cells, it may cause mutations that can pass down to future generations. In contrast, mutations in somatic cells are not passed on. Hence, radioisotopes used in nuclear medicine may have negative effects on DNA. A good example of a radiation-induced DNA damage is a tumor that has spread to other areas of the body.Nuclear medicine uses radioactive isotopes to diagnose cancer. They release low levels of radiation and are taken by mouth or by IV drip. Nuclear medicine doctors can use the pictures to help pinpoint the location of tumors. While radiation from radioisotopes isn’t as harmful as that of X-rays, the radiation from them can still damage to the patient.
R Ravichandran, “An overview of radioactive waste disposal procedures of a nuclear medicine department”-2011
Assembling of Radioactive Isotopes
A biomedical generator of the radioactive isotope strontium-82/rubidium-82 is the primary source of this material. This radioactive isotope is used for PET imaging of the heart and for myocardial perfusion, and its availability is critical to its development and use in clinical care. In the United States, only the “Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL)” and the “Brookhaven National Laboratories (BNL)” are the sole indigenous producers of Sr-82. MIT, however, is exploring the opportunity to commercialize this technology to be a Sr-82 supplier and to expand API Sr-82 production. The medical community needs a stable and affordable source of the isotope. While there is no universal source of Sr-82, the lack of a reliable supplier could have negative consequences for the medical community. While this is a serious problem that will take years to solve, Sr-82 has shown its potential to replace technetium-99m as a radioisotope for cardiac imaging.
Strontium Sr-82 is produced in the process of elution. The process requires 0.5 ml of physiological buffered saline to neutralize strontium-82. The buffer is then applied to the column 2 through a 22 mm Millipore filter. After the desired dose of strontium-82 has been eluted, the valves towards column 2 are closed.Strontium-82 is used in PET scans and 82Sr/82Rb generators. The parent isotope, strontium-82, decays to rubidium-82 through electron capture. The product of this process, 82Rb, decays to the stable form 82Kr. This is used for cardiac imaging, and the production of strontium-82 is limited.
A PET scan requires the use of a medical isotope called strontium-82. It’s half-life is around 25 days. It decays to rubidium-82 by positron emission and then to stable 82Kr. The 82Rb is got through a process known as ion-exchange chromatography using a tin oxide matrix.
The production of a medical imaging tracer is a complicated process. Various components must be used. For example, “Sr-82 is used in a generator to produce Rubidium-82”. This radioactive element has a half-life of 25 days and is used in cardiac imaging. The resulting materials undergo many qualities control tests. The final dissolution process involves using 4 M hydrochloric acid. It then passes gamma spectrometry and ICP-OES analysis.
Lutetium (Lu -177)
Lu is delivered in an atomic reactor through light of a source material with neutrons. There are at present two methods for delivering 177Lu: the transporter added way and the no transporter added way. The transporter added course involves stable lutetium as the material to light with neutrons. To upgrade the yield, and to forestall the making of undesirable other radionuclides, the lutetium is improved in 176Lu….
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