Nuclear medicine is a branch or specialty of medicine and medical imaging that uses radioactive isotopes (radionuclides) and relies on the process of radioactive decay in the diagnosis and treatment of disease. In nuclear medicine procedures, radionuclides are combined with other chemical compounds or pharmaceuticals to form radiopharmaceuticals. These radiopharmaceuticals, once administered to the patient, can localize to specific organs or cellular receptors. This special ability of radiopharmaceticals allow nuclear medicine to diagnose or treat a disease based on the cellular function and physiology rather than relying on the anatomy.
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