PET: other thoracic malignancies

Cancer Imaging. 2006 Oct 31;6:S82-8. [Link]

Quint LE

Department of Radiology, University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA.


The vast majority of esophageal cancers are fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) avid; the primary use for positron emission tomography (PET) in patients with esophageal cancer is in the detection of distant metastases, because known distant metastatic disease precludes surgical resection. High standardized uptake values (SUVs) may be predictive of poor prognosis. PET findings may be used to assess therapy response and evaluate for esophageal tumor recurrence after treatment. PET findings may be non-specific in different types of thymic lesions, although thymic carcinomas tend to be extremely FDG avid. PET can be helpful in detecting distant spread from invasive thymomas and thymic carcinomas. Similarly, PET may be used to assess the extent of disease in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma, thereby facilitating optimal therapy approaches.