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Technetium tc-99m succimer, diagnostic, per study dose, up to 10 millicuries

HCPCS code

Name of the Procedure:

Common Name: Technetium Tc-99m Succimer Scan Medical Term: Tc-99m DMSA Renal Scan


A Technetium Tc-99m succimer scan is a diagnostic imaging procedure that uses a small amount of radioactive material to evaluate the functioning of the kidneys. It helps doctors visualize kidney structure and detect abnormalities.


This procedure is primarily used to:

  • Assess renal function.
  • Identify and locate renal scarring or damage.
  • Evaluate for the presence of renal abnormalities or obstructions. The goal is to provide a detailed view of the kidneys, aiding in accurate diagnosis and guiding treatment plans.


  • Persistent or recurrent urinary tract infections.
  • Unexplained high blood pressure in children.
  • Suspected kidney scarring or damage from injury.
  • Congenital abnormalities of the kidneys.
  • Monitoring kidney function in patients with known renal disease.


  • Fasting is not typically required.
  • Patients should inform their doctors of any allergies, particularly to medications or contrast dyes.
  • Certain medications may need to be adjusted or paused before the procedure.
  • Hydration is encouraged unless contraindicated.

Procedure Description

  1. The patient receives an intravenous injection of Technetium Tc-99m succimer.
  2. General anesthesia or sedation is usually not required, but may be used in pediatric patients or those unable to stay still.
  3. The patient lies still on a scanning table as a special gamma camera takes images of the kidneys.
  4. The camera tracks the radioactive tracer as it moves through the kidneys, capturing detailed images.
  5. The entire scan is painless and non-invasive.


The scanning process typically takes about 30-60 minutes.


This procedure is performed in a hospital's nuclear medicine department or an outpatient imaging center equipped with specialized imaging technology.


  • Nuclear Medicine Physician: Oversees and interprets the scan.
  • Radiologic Technologist: Administers the radioactive tracer and operates the gamma camera.
  • Nurses: Assist with patient preparation and care.

Risks and Complications

Common risks:

  • Mild discomfort at the injection site. Rare risks:
  • Allergic reaction to the radioactive tracer.
  • Radiation exposure is minimal and considered safe; however, it is avoided or carefully managed in pregnant or breastfeeding women.


  • Provides detailed images of kidney structure and function.
  • Non-invasive and painless.
  • Can detect conditions that other imaging tests might miss.
  • Results generally available within a few hours to a couple of days.


  • Patients can typically resume normal activities immediately after the scan.
  • Instructions may include drinking plenty of fluids to help flush out the radioactive material.
  • Follow-up appointments may be scheduled to discuss results and next steps.


  • Ultrasound: No radiation but provides less detailed images.
  • CT Scan: Detailed but involves higher radiation exposure.
  • MRI: Good for soft tissue contrast but may not be as effective for specific kidney function assessments.

Patient Experience

During the procedure:

  • The patient may feel a cold sensation at the injection site.
  • Lying still might cause minor discomfort for some. After the procedure:
  • Patients usually do not feel any aftereffects from the radioactive tracer.
  • Minimal to no pain, ensuring a comfortable experience.

Pain management and comfort measures:

  • Inform the radiologic technologist of any discomfort or anxiety, and they can provide support and reassurance throughout the process.

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