Incidental Abnormal FDG Uptake in the Prostate on 18-fluoro-2-Deoxyglucose Positron Emission Tomography-Computed Tomography Scans

  • Kang, Pil Moon (Department of Urology, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University) ;
  • Seo, Won Ik (Department of Urology, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University) ;
  • Lee, Sun Seong (Department of Nuclear Medicine, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University) ;
  • Bae, Sang Kyun (Department of Nuclear Medicine, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University) ;
  • Kwak, Ho Sup (Department of Urology, Dong Eui Medical Center) ;
  • Min, Kweonsik (Department of Urology, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University) ;
  • Kim, Wansuk (Department of Urology, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University) ;
  • Kang, Dong Il (Department of Urology, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University)
  • Published : 2014.11.06


18-fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron emission tomography-computed tomography ($^{18}F$-FDG PET/CT) scans are commonly used for the staging and restaging of various malignancies, such as head and neck, breast, colorectal and gynecological cancers. However, the value of FDG PET/CT for detecting prostate cancer is unknown. The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical value of incidental prostate $^{18}F$-FDG uptake on PET/CT scans. We reviewed $^{18}F$-FDG PET/CT scan reports from September 2009 to September 2013, and selected cases that reported focal/diffuse FDG uptake in the prostate. We analyzed the correlation between $^{18}F$-FDG PET/CT scan findings and data collected during evaluations such as serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels, digital rectal examination (DRE), transrectal ultrasound (TRUS), and/or biopsy to confirm prostate cancer. Of a total of 18,393 cases, 106 (0.6%) exhibited abnormal hypermetabolism in the prostate. Additional evaluations were performed in 66 patients. Serum PSA levels were not significantly correlated with maximum standardized uptake values (SUVmax) in all patients (rho 0.483, p=0.132). Prostate biopsies were performed in 15 patients, and prostate cancer was confirmed in 11. The median serum PSA level was 4.8 (0.55-7.06) ng/mL and 127.4 (1.06-495) ng/mL in the benign and prostate cancer groups, respectively. The median SUVmax was higher in the prostate cancer group (mean 10.1, range 3.8-24.5) than in the benign group (mean 4.3, range 3.1-8.8), but the difference was not statistically significant (p=0.078). There was no significant correlation between SUVmax and serum PSA, prostatic volume, or Gleason score. $^{18}F$-FDG PET/CT scans did not reliably differentiate malignant or benign from abnormal uptake lesions in the prostate, and routine prostate biopsy was not usually recommended in patients with abnormal FDG uptake. Nevertheless, patients with incidental prostate uptake on $^{18}F$-FDG PET/CT scans should not be ignored and should be undergo further clinical evaluations, such as PSA and DRE.


Supported by : Inje University Busan Paik Hospital


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