SCINTILLATION scanning of the lungs employing macroaggregated serum albumin labelled with radioactive iodine (131I) is a relatively safe and simple procedure. The particles are injected intravenously and are rapidly distributed to the capillaries of the lungs; the lungs are scanned with an automatic highly collimated radiation detector which delineates the pattern of blood flow to the lungs. The technique is useful in the clinical diagnosis of pulmonary emboli. While at present the images may be somewhat crude, considerable refinement will result from developing technology.
The purpose of this report is to describe our experience with preoperative and postoperative lung scanning in a small selected group of patients and to discuss the advantage of preoperative lung scanning where an increased risk of a postoperative complication is suspected.
Materials and Methods
Preoperative and postoperative lung scans were obtained on 40 patients from the surgical pavilion services of The New York Hospital-Cornell