AE hepatic lesions: correlation between calcifications at CT and FDG-PET/CT metabolic activity
To correlate the presence of calcifications in alveolar echinococcosis (AE) hepatic lesions to the metabolic activity in 18 fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography combined with computed tomography (FDG-PET/CT).
Our institutional review board approved this study. 61 patients (29 women, 32 men, aged from 15 to 86 years) were included in the study. Images of FDG-PET/CT were interpreted by two independent nuclear medicine physicians. AE hepatic lesions were classified as AE lesions with or without hypermetabolic activity. The presence of calcifications was assessed on unenhanced CT scans by two independent radiologists blinded with regard to the metabolic activity of the AE hepatic lesions. Every single calcification the size of which was < 3 mm and non-measurable calcifications which were forming areas with a powdery appearance were considered as microcalcifications. All other types of calcifications were reported as macrocalcifications. Statistical analysis was performed and p value < 0.05 was considered as statistically significant.
Microcalcifications and macrocalcifications were present at CT in 95% (58/61) AE hepatic lesions and 43% (26/61) AE hepatic lesions, respectively. Hypermetabolic activity was present at FDG-PET/CT in 93% (57/61) AE hepatic lesions. 98% (56/57) of the AE hepatic lesions presenting with hypermetabolic activity at FDG-PET/CT showed microcalcifications at CT (p = 0.01) when only 40% (23/57) showed macrocalcifications at CT (p = 0.3). 100% (23/23) of the AE hepatic lesions with hypermetabolic activity at FDG-PET/CT and macrocalcifications at CT showed also microcalcifications at CT.
Hypermetabolic activity of AE hepatic lesions at FDG-PET/CT is strongly correlated to the presence of microcalcifications at CT, independently of the presence of macrocalcifications.
KeywordsAlveolar echinococcosis Calcifications FDG-PET/CT CT
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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