The authors examined 50 patients with cerebral glioma with use of positron emission tomography (PET) and L-[methyl]-[11C]methionine to assess the grade of malignancy and the extent of cerebral glioma. Carbon-11 methionine was highly accumulated in the lesion in 31 of 32 patients with high-grade glioma and 11 of 18 patients with low-grade glioma. The rate of uptake of C-11 methionine in high-grade glioma was significantly higher than in low-grade glioma (P < .001). However, in individual cases it was difficult to evaluate the grade of malignancy only from the degree of C-11 methionine accumulation. In most cases, the area of increased accumulation of C-11 methionine did not correspond to the abnormalities seen at computed tomography (CT). Surgical intervention confirmed that methionine PET delineated the extent of cerebral glioma more clearly than did CT. The authors concluded that methionine PET has greater utility in assessing the extent rather than the grade of malignancy of cerebral glioma.