Imaging of large vessel vasculitis with (18)FDG PET: illusion or reality? A critical review of the literature data

Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging. 2003 Sep;30(9):1305-13. doi: 10.1007/s00259-003-1209-y. Epub 2003 Jun 17.


Fluorine-18 fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography ((18)FDG PET) plays a major role in the management of oncology patients. Owing to the singular properties of the glucose tracer, many patients suffering from non-malignant diseases such as inflammatory or infectious diseases may also derive clinical benefit from the appropriate use of metabolic imaging. Large vessel vasculitides such as giant cell arteritis and Takayasu arteritis are other examples that may potentially extend the field of (18)FDG PET indications. The purpose of the present article is to assess the feasibility of metabolic imaging in vasculitis on the basis of the current literature data. In particular, the clinical context and the (18)FDG imaging patterns seen in patients with large vessel vasculitis are analysed in order to identify potential indications for metabolic imaging.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arteries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Arteries / metabolism*
  • Arteriosclerosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Arteriosclerosis / metabolism
  • Arteritis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Arteritis / metabolism*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18 / pharmacokinetics*
  • Giant Cell Arteritis / diagnostic imaging
  • Giant Cell Arteritis / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Radiopharmaceuticals / pharmacokinetics
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Takayasu Arteritis / diagnostic imaging
  • Takayasu Arteritis / metabolism
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed / methods*
  • Vasculitis / diagnostic imaging
  • Vasculitis / metabolism


  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18