Myocardial Perfusion Scan Information Sheet

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What is a Myocardial Perfusion Scan?

A Myocardial Perfusion Scan can also be called a ‘Nuclear Medicine Stress Test’, ‘MIBI’, ‘Myoview’, or ‘Persantin Stress Test’. They all mean the same test.

Your doctor has requested this test to help assess the blood flow to your heart both at rest and after exercise. This is useful to diagnose coronary artery disease.

What happens during the test?

When you arrive, we will ask you some questions, and put a cannula into a vein in your arm. We use this cannula throughout the day, so you only need one needle. We inject a radiotracer through the cannula. The radiotracer gets carried into your heart.

There are two parts to this test – rest and stress.

PART 1 - REST: We will give you the first injection of the radiotracer when you are resting, and take some images about 30-45 min later. This shows us which parts of the heart have a good blood supply at rest.

PART 2 - STRESS: If you are able, we will exercise you on a treadmill to ‘stress’ your heart. If not, we will give you a medication which effectively makes your heart ‘think’ that you are exercising. When your heart is stressed, we will give you the second injection of the tracer, and take some more pictures. This shows us which parts of the heart have a good blood supply at stress. Then our doctor compares the two sets of pictures.

You will be closely monitored throughout the day, and the stress test will be supervised by our doctor as well as a nurse. If you are diabetic, we will also monitor your blood glucose during the day.

How long will my test take?

Expect to be in Nuclear Medicine for at least 5 hours, possibly longer. You may wish to bring some reading material or something to keep you occupied in the waiting periods. We recommend that you park in the 6 hour spaces on level 4 of the multistorey car park.

It is important to bring any previous test results and your Medicare card with you on the day.

Caffeine: YOU MUST NOT HAVE ANYTHING CONTAINING CAFFEINE FROM 8am the day before your test.

This is extremely important and includes all of the following:

  • Tea and Coffee
  • ‘Decaf’ Tea and Coffee
  • Chocolate or Chocolate drinks
  • Milo
  • Cocoa
  • Cola drinks
  • Energy and Sports Drinks
  • Herbal Tea (some contain small amounts of caffeine)
  • Medications containing Theophylline (typically in asthma medications)

If you have had anything on this list in the 24 hours before your appointment, please call Nuclear Medicine as your test will need to be re-scheduled. If you have had any of these products please call us ASAP, if you have not followed these instructions you risk the results of your test being inaccurate thereby compromising your potential treatment.

You may call Nuclear Medicine if you have any concerns around products containing caffeine.

We have produced a “NO CAFFEINE” reminder at the end of this leaflet for you to place on your fridge to help you remember.


If you are NOT Diabetic: You need to fast from midnight the night before the test. This means no breakfast, however you can continue to drink water

If you ARE Diabetic: Light breakfast (i.e. toast & juice) before 6:00am, then fast. Take half your normal morning insulin / tablet with your breakfast. You may continue to drink water.

Please tell us when you arrive if you have a history of sudden changes in your blood sugar level.


Please contact your referring doctor to discuss if any of your medications should be ceased prior to your test. Your doctor may require you to stop taking some of your medications.

Your referring doctor is the only one who can advise you about ceasing any medications. Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, you can take your medications as normal with water.

What if I am pregnant, breast feeding or care for children?

Please call Nuclear Medicine on 6244 2439 to discuss your options. This procedure is not suitable for pregnant women. This procedure may have been deemed suitable for you to undergo while you are breastfeeding. You will need to stop breastfeeding for a minimum of 4 hours following the final administration of radiotracer. It is advised that you express and discard your breast milk during this period. You may resume breastfeeding after this period. Further information may be obtained from the staff member performing your scan.

You will need to limit contact with infants / children and pregnant women for a minimum of 4 hours following the final administration of the radiotracer. If you share care of children it is advisable that you arrange for alternative care for a minimum of 4 hours after the procedure is completed. If you are the sole carer of children please contact Nuclear Medicine for specific advice.


Please complete the attached questionnaire before you come for your test, and bring it with you to your appointment.

Clothing: We will need to be able to access your elbow, and place ECG dots on your chest. You may need to exercise on a treadmill. Please wear suitable and comfortable clothing i.e. pants, walking shoes, etc.

Family / Friends:

Due to the length of this procedure and the small size of the Nuclear Medicine waiting area we ask that only one family member/friend stay with you during your visit.


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