The Journal of Medical Investigation
Online ISSN : 1349-6867
Print ISSN : 1343-1420
ISSN-L : 1343-1420
The utility of FDG-PET in the diagnosis of thymic epithelial tumors
Hideki Otsuka
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2012 Volume 59 Issue 3.4 Pages 225-234


In this article, seven studies evaluating the utility of FDG-PET in the diagnosis of thymic epithelial tumors were reviewed and the results of an investigation conducted in Tokushima University Hospital are reported. FDG accumulation of low-risk thymoma is low, and FDG accumulation of thymic carcinoma is high. High-risk thymoma exhibits various degrees of accumulation and a definite conclusion has not yet been reached; however, overall, the higher the histological grade, the higher the FDG accumulation becomes, suggesting that this is correlated to staging. Our data also support the previous reports. FDG-PET may indicate lymph node metastasis and distant metastasis, which are sometimes difficult to detect using other modalities. When lymph node metastasis and/or distant metastasis are suspected in addition to thymic lesions, FDG-PET/CT, which allows for searching of the entire body at once, is useful. FDG-PET/CT is effective for estimating histopathological malignancy and staging in the diagnosis of thymic epithelial tumors and can be an important imaging test with high relevance to the prognosis of a patient. J. Med. Invest. 59: 225-234, August, 2012

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© 2012 by The University of Tokushima Faculty of Medicine
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