Please contact the CVI office at least 24 hour prior to cancel, missing this appointment may result in a fee being assessed to your account for the cost of preparations. Please call 407-894-4880 more than 24 hour prior to cancel.

How to prepare for the test:

  • Plan to be at CVI for 1 hour. If you bring someone with you, they will not be permitted into the testing area.
  • Please tell the staff if you may be pregnant or are nursing.
  • Wear a button-down short sleeve shirt (no metal buttons or zippers). Do not wear necklaces. Please bring a jacket or sweater, as the department may be cold.
  • Take your usual medications, unless told otherwise. Drink plenty of water (water only).

What will happen during the test?

The Muga scan is comprised of:

  • Blood is drawn from the arm to attach a radioactive tracer to the red blood cells. The tagged red blood cells are then injected back into the bloodstream.
  • Laying under a special camera which is able to detect radiation given off by the tagged red blood cells.
  • The patient will be connected to an EKG to monitor the heart rhythm
  • The tagged red blood cells fill the heart chambers and an image is produced by the camera as an outline of those chambers
  • The final results will give an ejection fraction from the left ventricle, which is reported as a percentage.

What is a MUGA Nuclear Scan?

  • Used to assess the heart muscle’s strength of contraction
  • MUGA stands for multiple gated acquisition scan.
  • Nuclear refers to the radioactive tracer that is injected into the bloodstream to allow a specialized camera to take images of the tracer in the red blood cells of the heart which will show the heart wall motion
  • The nuclear tracer is radioactive but you will receive the same or less radiation than a typical x-ray.

What information is learned from this testing?

The MUGA scan will allow the doctor to determine:

  • If your heart has sustained damage and to what degree
  • An accurate and reproducible method for monitoring and measuring the ejection fraction of the heart
  • Repeated MUGA scans are useful in following cardiac function during chemotherapy. Some chemotherapeutic agents can be quite toxic to the heart muscle. Measuring the LVEF during a chemotherapy session can help determine if it is safe to start or continue therapy.