Background: Positron emission tomography (PET) with fluorine-18 labeled deoxyglucose (FDG) can detect tumor recurrences in surgical patients that are otherwise difficult to assess by CT, as well as distant metastases and small malignant nodes that are not identified by other imaging modalities. However, the evaluation of such malignancy is complicated by urinary and colonic concentrations of FDG. Methods and examples of the elimination of artifactual accumulation of FDG in PET imaging of the abdomen and pelvis are presented.
Methods: Elimination of artifactual accumulation requires patient preparation that begins with cleansing of the colon using an isosmotic solution taken the evening prior to examination. Approximately 500 MBq of F-18 FDG is intravenously administered upon arrival at the PET facility and then the patient is hydrated. After administration of furosemide, a Foley catheter with a drainage bag is placed and the patient is then scanned. Just prior to scanning over the pelvis, normal saline is delivered retrogradely into the urinary bladder. At the end of scanning, the patient voids and repeated pelvic images are obtained.
Results: These routines yield a clean scanning field. Lesions that will generally be missed because they are obscured by FDG accumulations along the colon or in the kidneys, ureters, or bladder are better visualized and identified with greater confidence. Artifacts that lead to misinterpretation also are reduced.
Conclusion: Elimination of artifactual accumulation of FDG in the colon and urinary system is essential if primary cancer, associated adenopathy, or subtle recurrences are to be evaluated in FDG PET imaging of the abdomen and pelvis.