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An HIDA scan, also referred to as hepatobiliary or gallbladder scan, is an imaging procedure that is used to help your Arlington gastroenterologist track the production and flow of bile from your liver to your small intestine. A specialized radiology procedure, an HIDA scan works to assess the overall function and structure of the gallbladder. This scan uses a tiny amount of radioactive substance to assist in the examination and highlight certain organs during the procedure.

An HIDA scan is useful for your Arlington gastroenterologist, as it allows for him to determine whether or not your digestive system is properly breaking down the fats in the foods you are eating. Bile is a fluid that is produced by your liver and serves as an assistant to your digestive system. An HIDA scan will create pictures of your liver, gallbladder, biliary tract, and small intestine, enabling your Arlington, Texas gastroenterologist to more adequately assess the overall function of these internal organs and body parts.

Reasons for an HIDA Scan

Your Arlington gastroenterologist will commonly order an HIDA scan to properly track the flow of bile and evaluate your gallbladder. This test is also helpful in diagnosing numerous diseases and conditions, including:

  • Bile duct obstruction
  • Bile leakage
  • Congenital abnormalities in the bile ducts
  • Gallbladder inflammation
  • Gallstones
  • Severe right abdominal pain
  • Overall gallbladder function

Before the Procedure

In order to ensure you are properly prepared for the procedure, it is important for you to fast for two or more hours leading up the the scan. It may also be advisable for you to delay in taking some medications, although you should check with your gastroenterologist and medical staff for more specific instructions. It may also be recommended that you take certain medications in order to enhance the scan. However, this will be determined on a case to case basis by your Arlington gastroenterologist.

What to Expect

During the HIDA scan you will have a medication injected into a vein in your arm as you are lying on your back. This medication contains a radioactive tracer that will travel with the bile from your lover, into your gallbladder, and then through the bile ducts leading into your small intestine. During this process it is normal to experience some pressure. As the tracer works it way through your digestive system a camera will work to take pictures in one minute intervals. It is important for you to keep still during the scan, as any movement could damage the quality of pictures being taken.


Arlington Gastroenterology Services
2725 Matlock Road
Arlington, TX 76015
Phone: 817-417-4027
Fax: 817-417-4043

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