A. Schmitz, J. Risse, F. Grünwald, F. Gassel, H. Biersack, O. Schmitt


April 2014, Volume 10, Issue 6, pp 534 - 539 Original Article Read Full Article 10.1007/s005860100339

First Online: 13 April 2014

Nuclear medicine procedures can be helpful in diagnosing spine infections. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the findings of positron emission tomography with fluorine-18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FGD-PET) in the detection of spondylodiscitis. We performed FDG-PET in 16 patients with suspected spondylodiscitis. All the patients were operated and underwent histopathological examination. The FDG-PET findings were graded and evaluated by two independent nuclear medicine physicians. Of the 16 patients, 12 had a histopathologically confirmed spondylodiscitis. In all these 12 patients, FDG-PET was true-positive. In the four patients without spondylodiscitis, FDG-PET showed three true-negative and one false-positive result. In spondylodiscitis, the mean standard uptake value (SUV) of FDG was 7.5 (SD±3.8). The PET scans depicted the paravertebral soft tissue involvement in cases of spondylodiscitis. Our first results showed that FDG-PET is a very sensitive imaging procedure in the detection of spondylodiscitis. Compared to other nuclear medicine procedures, PET enables a rapid imaging with acceptable radiation dose and high spatial resolution.


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