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Asia Pac J Clin Oncol. 2015 Mar;11(1):34-40. doi: 10.1111/ajco.12294. Epub 2015 Jan 6.

Impact of incidental findings on integrated 2-[18F]-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose positron emission tomography/computed tomography in patients with gastric cancer.

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Department of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.



Since positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) has been introduced, many incidental findings have been identified. The aim of this study was to assess the clinical significance of incidental findings on PET/CT in patients with gastric cancer.


A total of 421 patients with gastric cancer underwent PET/CT for initial staging. Incidental findings on PET/CT were classified into five categories according to clinical significance--normal variant, benign, probably benign, probably malignant, and definitely malignant. We obtained information regarding follow-up examinations, additional visits, final diagnosis of incidental findings and short-term medical costs for further evaluation.


Eight hundred eighty-two incidental findings were detected in 386 (91.7%) patients. Of 274 incidental findings classified as probably benign, probably malignant or definitely malignant, 130 required one or more additional investigations. Finally, 12 (9.2%) were proved to be associated with second primary malignancy or metastasis of gastric cancer. One hundred twenty-nine additional outpatient visits and 10 additional hospitalizations were needed for evaluating the incidental findings. The treatment strategy for gastric cancer was changed in one patient. The estimated cost of additional investigations was $US283 (95% CI: $US248-$US311) per patient.


Incidental findings on PET/CT were common. Although the incidental findings were suspicious of malignancy, most were benign with high costs for additional investigations.


18F-FDG PET/CT; gastric cancer; incidental finding

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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