Tumefactive multiple sclerosis (tumefactive MS) is an atypical variant of MS characterized by a large isolated demyelinating lesion. Because tumefactive MS mimics high grade astrocytoma clinically and radiologically, it is difficult to distinguish between the two using only traditional diagnostic modalities, such as routine magnetic resonance imaging. [11C] methionine positron emission tomography (MET PET) has been known as a useful diagnostic tool for glioma. However, it has not been established as a diagnostic tool for tumefactive MS yet. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the performance of MET PET in differentiating tumefactive MS from high grade astrocytoma. We studied patients with tumefactive MS [six patients (three men, three women), 7 lesions] and 77 patients with astrocytoma (World Health Organization grade II: 13 patients, grade III: 28 patients, and grade IV: 36 patients), and we compared MET uptake of tumefactive demyelinating lesions and astrocytoma. For MET PET analysis, Lesion/Normal region ratios (L/N ratios) were calculated and compared between tumefactive demyelinating lesions and astrocytoma. On MET PET, the L mean/N ratio of tumefactive MS was 1.18 ± 0.50, which was significantly lower than that of high-grade glioma (astrocytoma grade III: 1.95 ± 0.62, P = 0.006; grade IV: 2.35 ± 0.54, P <0.0001). The L maximum (L max)/N ratio of tumefactive demyelinating lesion was also significantly lower than that of high grade astrocytoma (tumefactive MS: 1.89 ± 0.55; astrocytoma grade III: 3.37 ± 1.36, P = 0.0232; astrocytoma grade IV: 4.35 ± 1.30, P <0.0001). In conclusion, MET PET can help differentiate tumefactive MS from high grade astrocytoma.