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Harv Rev Psychiatry. 1996 May-Jun;4(1):27-38.

Single photon emission computed tomography in psychiatry: current perspectives.

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Department of Psychiatry, Deaconess Hospital, Boston, MA 02215, USA.


Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) is a widely available neuroimaging technique for the three-dimensional assessment of regional cerebral blood flow. The clinical utility of SPECT in neuropsychiatry is well established, and research devoted to its use in primary psychiatric disorders has been gaining momentum. In this review recent developments in SPECT neuroimaging are described, including the utility of SPECT in the differential diagnosis of the dementias and other neuropsychiatric conditions; SPECT studies of patients with affective disorders, at baseline and after treatment; and SPECT studies utilizing innovative techniques such as neuroreceptor imaging and activation strategies. Advances in SPECT research methodology and study design that may contribute to clarifying the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders are examined.

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