A Biliary Scan is a test which evaluates the biliary system and your gall-bladder.
How to Prepare?

Please remember to bring your requesting letter and any recent X-rays or CT scans. At the time of your appointment, report to North Shore Radiology and Nuclear Medicine, which is located on the ground floor of North Shore Private Hospital in Westbourne St.


Pain medications containing morphine should be ceased prior to the scan. Check with your doctor to see how long you should be off of them for, it is usually about 24 to 48 hours. All other medications can be taken.

You should fast for at least 4 hours prior to the commencement of the test.

The test is usually not performed in pregnant women, so if you know that you are (or think you might be) pregnant, please inform us before the test begins.

What to Expect?

After the test is explained to you, a nee dle will be placed into a vein in your arm (usually near the elbow) and you will be given an injection of a small    amount of a radioactive compound. A specialised camera is then used to take scans of your upper abdomen. These are taken for 1 hour. In some cases, an injection of a substance which normally contracts the    gall bladder (CCK) is required and imaging is continued for another 30 minutes.


There are no side effects or reactions from the HIDA injection. The injection does NOT contain iodine and is therefore safe to give if you have had a previous allergic reaction to X-ray contrast injections. If you require the CCK injection you may notice some nausea, abdominal pain or belching. If this occurs, it generally lasts less than 10 minutes. There are, however, no serious side effects with the CCK injection. Although you will be  required to keep still during the scan, the procedure itself is completely painless. There is no need to hold your breath during the test.


In general, the scans and results are sent to your doctor the next working day. Depending on the type of scan you are having (and the clinical urgency), you may be able to take the scan with you in some cases, however there will be a delay while the report is typed.

You can drive home after the scan. You will not be drowsy in any way.

If you have any questions please phone North Shore Radiology and Nuclear Medicine on 8425 3684. We will be happy to answer any queries that you may have.

Additional Information