The word “theranostics” comes from a combination of the words therapeutics and diagnostics. Theranostics is a personalized approach to treating cancer, using both diagnostics and therapy.
Theranostics uses a PET scan to see specific targets, known as tumor receptors, present on tumor cells. A special radiotracer is used, which makes these targets visible on the scan. Following the scan, a radioactive drug is used to treat the tumors. The drug is given as an injection and selectively targets the tumor cells while avoiding healthy cells.