A rare B-cell type chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection patient mimicking lymphoma on 18F-FDG PET/CT and literature review

Am J Nucl Med Mol Imaging. 2022 Aug 20;12(4):129-137. eCollection 2022.


A 13-year-old girl suffered from worsen snoring and persistent bilateral nasal congestion for one year. Paranasal sinus computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) found nasopharyngeal passages and sinus were occupied with soft tissues and bilateral neck enlarged lymph nodes 6 months ago. Tumor markers were normal. The titers of anti-Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) IgM, anti-EBV IgG, early antigen (EA) IgG, and Epstein-Barr nuclear antigen (EBNA) IgG increased. 2-Deoxy-2-[fluorine-18]-fluoro-D-glucose (18F-FDG) positron emission tomography combined with CT (PET/CT) revealed thickened soft tissues in nasopharynx and oropharynx, enlarged multiple lymph nodes in the neck, bilateral armpits, abdominal cavity and retroperitoneum, and pelvic cavity, diffuse thickening of the gastric wall of the antrum with hypermetabolism. According to the age, situation, regions, and abnormal FDG uptake, an initial diagnosis of EBV-related lymphoma was made. However, the pathological results of the nasopharyngeal mass and the abdominal lymph node confirmed the final diagnosis of a B-cell type chronic active Epstein-Barr virus disease (CAEBV), a rare type of EBV associated lymphoproliferative disorder (LPD). After receiving adoptive immune cells therapy, the EBV load decreased. At present, the patient is being followed up.

Keywords: 18F FDG; B cell; Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) associated lymphoproliferative disorders; PET/CT; chronic active EBV disease.

Publication types

  • Case Reports