Purpose: To assess the uptake of 2-[fluorine-18]-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) in common and uncommon tumors in children and to develop a method for performing positron emission tomography (PET) studies in children with malignant neoplasms.
Materials and methods: Twenty-two pediatric patients with known or suspected malignancies (27 scans) underwent FDG PET. Tumor uptake of FDG was measured on PET scans.
Results: Tumor uptake of FDG was detected in 17 of 21 patients with malignant disease. Neuroblastomas and their metastases (including those that did not absorb metaiodobenzylguanidine) intensely accumulated FDG. In a patient with Ewing sarcoma, FDG PET showed two foci of metastatic disease not evident on bone scans. In two patients, PET showed that large areas of the tumor were necrotic.
Conclusion: FDG PET is feasible, is useful in the study of tumors in children, and may provide unique, clinically important information.