Bone Marrow Scan

A bone marrow scan creates a map of your bone marrow to assess any changes. This scan is usually completed after the structure of the bone has been altered by trauma or surgery.

A bone marrow scan uses a small amount of radioactive material, which is so small it has no side effects.


To begin, a small amount of radioactive tracer will be injected into a vein in your arm. After waiting about one hour, you will be positioned next to a gamma camera, where painless images will be taken. These images will take 20 minutes to one hour.

A nuclear medicine doctor may order additional images or more images after a period of waiting. If additional images are requested, please do not be alarmed. This is a routine part of the scan.


  • No tests that use barium for at least 48 hours prior to your bone marrow scan
  • You may eat and drink as usual
  • You may take your prescriptions as normal
  • Bring a list of your medications
  • Bring your doctor's written order for the exam to your appointment


Patients of childbearing age should review the pregnancy and breastfeeding guidelines.