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The Quarterly Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging 2014 December;58(4):332-43

Copyright © 2014 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Guidance for reading FDG PET scans in dementia patients

Herholz K.

Wolfson Molecular Imaging Centre and Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK


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18F-2-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) is a powerful method for detection of disease-related impairment of cerebral glucose metabolism in neurodegenerative diseases. It is of particular interest for early and differential diagnosis of dementia. Reading FDG PET scans requires training to recognise deviations from normal functional brain anatomy and its variations. This paper provides guidance for displaying FDG PET brain scans in a reproducible manner that allows reliable recognition of characteristic disease-related metabolic changes. It also describes typical findings in Alzheimer’s disease, Frontotemporal Dementia and Dementia with Lewy Bodies and possible confounding factors, such as vascular changes and brain atrophy. It provides a brief overview on findings in other neurodegenerative diseases and addresses the potential and limitations of software packages for comparison of individual scans with reference data.

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