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maleficence of F-18 FP-CIT PET/CT

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I am 30 years old and my symptoms started from tremors in hands, back of neck and inside the body (torso and legs).

Hand tremors can be witnessed when I stretch my hands or hold something light. tremors inside of my body is not visible from the outside. It isn't resting tremors..

These symptoms started last summer and when I visited 3 different university hospital neurologists, 2 of them diagnosed me essential tremor and 1 diagnosed me dystonia r/o.

only did bran MRI and it was all normal but I couldn't stop worrying about Parkinson disease as I read on the website that dystonia can be a initial symptom of young off-set Parkinson disease.

Having been worried about Parkinson disease almost a year, my symptoms increased, only right side of my body muscles had stronger tension and stiffened up especially my arm and leg. 

I don't have any problem because of that in daily life looking all normal but the fear takes all over me.

I heard that F-18 FP CIT PET/CT brain scan is used to diagnose Parkinson disease but I didn't do it because I was again worried about radiation exposure due to the test and I also heard that even F-18 FP CIT PET/CT test shows normal for very early stage of Parkinson disease.

However, I don't think I can get over with worrying about Parkinson disease unless I get the normal result of F-18 FP CIT PET/CT.

So I was wondering

1) in what stage would F-18 FP CIT PET/CT brain scan be helpful to diagnose Parkinson disease? With my symptoms above and if i take the test, would the dopamine decrease can be seen in the test? or are these symptoms too weak that the test will show normal?


2) what is the maleficence of F-18 FP CIT PET/CT? how bad is this radiation exposure? would this radiation exposure and the test itself have bad impacts on my brain?


3) if the result of PET/CT brain scan is normal, then can I take it as I don't have Parkinson disease?


Apologize for this very long test but I'd highly appreciate if you would share your opinions.

Thank you in advance!

Sincerely yours,




Edited by Happyhealthylife

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PET is considered safe but only a few places in the USA do it well and interpret it accurately so in general I do very few of them.

The easier test is a DAT scan which can inform about whether dopamine is involved.  If completely negative DAT less likely Parkinson compared to ET.  DAT does not give exact diagnosis and could be other parkinsonisms if positive.

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