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Radiology. 2007 Aug;244(2):557-65. Epub 2007 Jun 20.

Solitary brain lesions enhancing at MR imaging: evaluation with fluorine 18 fluorocholine PET.

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Hamamatsu/Queen's PET Imaging Center, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA.



To prospectively determine whether differences between benign and malignant brain lesions can be depicted with fluorine 18 ((18)F) fluorocholine positron emission tomography (PET).


Thirty consecutive patients (14 women, 16 men; age range, 26-79 years) with solitary brain lesions that were enhanced at magnetic resonance (MR) imaging underwent whole-brain (18)F-fluorocholine PET after giving informed consent in this institutional review board-approved, HIPAA-compliant study. Histopathologic diagnoses were made in 24 cases (13 high-grade gliomas, eight metastases to the brain, and three benign lesions). In six cases, benign lesions were diagnosed on the basis of longitudinal follow-up MR findings. The maximum standardized uptake value (SUV(max)) for lesion and peritumoral regions was measured on PET images, and a lesion-to-normal tissue uptake ratio (LNR) was calculated. Differences were assessed with one-way analysis of variance, Fisher exact, and Student t tests.


Differences in SUV(max) between high-grade gliomas (1.89 +/- 0.78 [mean +/- standard deviation]), metastases (4.11 +/- 1.68), and benign lesions (0.59 +/- 0.31) were significant (P < .0001). LNRs also differed significantly (5.15 +/- 2.51, 10.91 +/- 2.14, and 1.28 +/- 0.32, respectively; P < .0001). These differences were also significant at pairwise analysis. The peritumoral LNR exceeded 2.0 in seven high-grade gliomas and no metastases (P = .02). In 14 radiation-treated patients, the lesions classified as benign demonstrated significantly less uptake compared with the recurrent tumors (SUV(max): 0.72 +/- 0.38 vs 2.27 +/- 1.24, P < .01; LNR: 1.36 +/- 0.43 vs 5.88 +/- 3.66, P < .01).


High-grade gliomas, metastases, and benign lesions can be distinguished on the basis of measured fluorocholine uptake. Increased peritumoral fluorocholine uptake is a distinguishing characteristic of high-grade gliomas.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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