Iatrogenic FDG foci in the lungs: a pitfall of PET image interpretation

Eur Radiol. 2003 Sep;13(9):2122-7. doi: 10.1007/s00330-002-1681-y. Epub 2002 Oct 17.


2-[F-18]-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) has become an important staging modality for many tumors, including bronchial carcinoma; however it is important to know that there are several pitfalls in PET image interpretation. In this report we demonstrate three cases in which focal intrapulmonary FDG uptake could possibly represent iatrogenic microembolism. These FDG accumulations would have been interpreted as malignant tumor mass in the lung if no anatomic correlation would have been performed. For this reason, we further present an integrated PET/CT scanner, which recently has been introduced. This correlation of molecular and morphological information enables the specification of the FDG-PET findings.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18 / adverse effects
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18 / pharmacokinetics*
  • Humans
  • Iatrogenic Disease*
  • Lung / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Middle Aged
  • Pulmonary Embolism / diagnostic imaging
  • Pulmonary Embolism / etiology*
  • Radiography
  • Radiopharmaceuticals / adverse effects
  • Radiopharmaceuticals / pharmacokinetics*
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed* / adverse effects
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed* / instrumentation


  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18