Author Interviews, JAMA, Lung Cancer, Medical Imaging, Surgical Research, Vanderbilt / 10.11.2017 Interview with: Amelia W. Maiga, MD MPH Vanderbilt General Surgery Resident VA Quality Scholar, TVHS What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Positron emission tomography (PET) combined with fludeoxyglucose F18 (FDG) is currently recommended for the noninvasive diagnosis of lung nodules suspicious for lung cancer. Our investigation adds to growing evidence that FDG-PET scans should be interpreted with caution in the diagnosis of lung cancer. Misdiagnosis of lung lesions driven by FDG-PET avidity can lead to unnecessary tests and surgeries for patients, along with potentially additional complications and mortality. To estimate FDG-PET diagnostic accuracy, we conducted a multi-center retrospective cohort study. The seven cohorts originating from Tennessee, Arizona, Massachusetts and Virginia together comprised 1188 nodules, 81 percent of which were malignant. Smaller nodules were missed by FDG-PET imaging. Surprisingly, negative PET scans were also not reliable indicators of the absence of disease, especially in patients with smaller nodules or who are known to have a high probability of lung cancer prior to the FDG-PET test. Our study supports a previous meta-analyses that found FDG-PET to be less reliable in regions of the country where fungal lung diseases are endemic. The most common fungal lung diseases in the United States are histoplasmosis, coccidioidomycosis and blastomycosis. All three fungi reside in soils. Histoplasmosis and blastomycosis are common across much of the Mississippi, Ohio and Missouri river valleys and coccidioidomycosis is prevalent in the southwestern U.S. These infections generate inflamed nodules in the lungs (granulomas), which can be mistaken for cancerous lesions by imaging. (more…)
ALS, Author Interviews, JAMA, Radiology / 12.03.2014

Prof. Dr. Philip Van Damme, MD, PhD Neuromuscular Reference Center, Neurology Department, University Hospitals Leuven Vesalius Research Center, VIB, Leuven Leuven Institute of Neurodegenerative Disorders (LIND) KU Leuven, Interview with: Prof. Dr. Philip Van Damme, MD, PhD Neuromuscular Reference Center, Neurology Department, University Hospitals Leuven Vesalius Research Center, VIB, Leuven Leuven Institute of Neurodegenerative Disorders (LIND) KU Leuven, Belgium What are the main findings of the study? Prof: Van Damme: Earlier FDG-PET studies carried out in the 80’ties already pointed out that patients with ALS had decrease glucose uptake in the brain that is more extended than the motor cortex, at least at the group level. Of course, this imaging technique has been improved since then. We prospectively assessed the diagnostic and prognostic value of FDG-PET in patients that were referred to us because a diagnosis of ALS was suspected. The most important finding of our study probably is that FDG-PET shows perirolandic and variable frontotemporal hypometabolism in most patients with ALS at the first presentation in our clinic. It suggests that FDG-PET is a very sensitive marker of cerebral involvement in ALS, which has a high sensitivity at the single patient level. In addition our study revealed that the co-occurrence of extensive prefrontal or anterior temporal hypometabolism was present in about 10% of patients and had a negative effect on survival after disease onset. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Radiology / 31.07.2013

Hybrid PET/MR Imaging of the Heart: Feasibility and Initial Results Felix Nensa, MD Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology and Neuroradiology University Hospital Essen, University of Duisburg-Essen, Hufelandstrasse 55, 45147 Essen, Germany; What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Nensa: Cardiac positron emission tomography (PET)/magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with fluorine 18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) turned out to be feasible with an integrated whole-body 3-Tesla PET/MRI system. Despite the presence of a PET detector in the magnetic field of the MR imaging unit, high-quality cardiac MR images were acquired. PET images originating from a PET/CT and the PET/MR scanner showed very good visual agreement and no statistical significant difference of the mean was found in standardized uptake values, however, variance was considerable. In patients with myocardial infarction, PET and MR images were in good concordance regarding both, cine imaging and late gadolinium-enhanced imaging. (more…)