Estimated radiation dose to the newborn in FDG-PET studies

J Nucl Med. 1996 Feb;37(2):387-93.


The aim of this study was to estimate the radiation dose due to intravenous injection of 2-[18F]fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) for infants studied with PET.

Methods: The radioactivity concentration in the brain and bladder content was measured with PET to determine the cumulated activity in these organs in 21 infant FDG studies. The individual organ masses were estimated according to the whole-body and brain masses, and they were used to calculate the absorbed dose per unit cumulated activity (S values). For organs other than brain and bladder, the cumulated activity was defined from adult studies. For each individual patient, the absorbed dose to the brain, bladder wall and selected organs were calculated. An estimation of the effective dose was determined.

Results: Whole-body distribution of FDG in the infants differed from adults: a greater proportion of the injected activity accumulated into the brain (9% versus 7%) and less was excreted to urine (7% versus 20% respectively). The measured cumulated activity in the brain was 0.25 MBq.h/MBq and in the bladder content 0.04 MBq.h/MBq with a large individual variation in latter. The calculated absorbed dose was 0.24 mGy/MBq to the brain and 1.03 mGy/MBq to the bladder wall. The estimated effective dose was 0.43 mSv/MBq.

Conclusion: The dose to the bladder wall was lower in infants as compared to adults with ordinary amounts of injected activity. The greater amount of activity remaining in the body may increase the dose to other organs. The effective dose was lower compared to adults and conventional nuclear medicine studies of infants. PET can be a valuable tool in pediatric nuclear medicine because of good resolution images, sensitive radiation measurement and a variety of tracers labeled with short-lived isotopes.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Weight
  • Brain / radiation effects
  • Deoxyglucose / analogs & derivatives*
  • Fluorine Radioisotopes*
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Radiation Dosage
  • Radiation Protection*
  • Radiometry
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed*
  • Urinary Bladder / radiation effects


  • Fluorine Radioisotopes
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18
  • Deoxyglucose