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Dis Esophagus. 2009;22(4):E6-E10. doi: 10.1111/j.1442-2050.2007.00712.x.

Schwannoma of the esophagus: a case exhibiting high 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose uptake in positron emission tomography imaging.

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  • 1Division of Digestive and General Surgery, Niigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Niigata, Japan. matsuki3@seagreen.ocn.ne.jp


Esophageal schwannoma is rare and it is difficult preoperatively to confirm a definitive diagnosis, even using current imaging techniques. We present a case of a benign esophageal schwannoma that was surgically excised and confirmed by immunohistochemical staining. Conventional radiological studies, including barium meal, computed tomography and endoscopic examination had shown a solid submucosal tumor of the upper thoracic esophagus but had been unable to confirm the diagnosis. Positron emission tomography was carried out to evaluate the malignant potential and showed a high uptake of 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) into the tumor in both the early and delayed phase, suggesting that the tumor was a potentially malignant tumor such as a gastrointestinal stromal tumor. This is the first reported case of esophageal schwannoma that indicated a high FDG uptake. Although consensus has not been reached regarding the precise mechanism of FDG accumulation in schwannomas, we discuss our clinicopathological findings and review other studies of the subject.

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