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Imaging in medicine
Imaging in medicine

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6.3.2 Crystal

Almost all modern gamma cameras use (thallium-doped) sodium iodide (NaI) as the scintillation crystal. A gamma photon interacts with the crystal to produce many photons of visible light.

Sodium iodide is hygroscopic so cannot be left exposed to the air. The front surface is coated with a low atomic number metal that allows the gamma photons to pass through. The rear surface is covered with a transparent coating so that the visible photons can pass through to the photomultiplier tubes.