PET/CT in the diagnosis and workup of sarcoidosis: Focus on atypical manifestations

Gensuke Akaike, Malak Itani, Hardik Shah, Jitesh Ahuja, Burcak Yilmaz Gunes, Richard Assaker, Fatemeh Behnia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Sarcoidosis is a multisystem disease characterized by the formation of noncaseating granulomas. Lung and intrathoracic lymph nodes are classic sites of involvement; however, sarcoidosis can affect any site in the body. The clinical course is extremely variable, and the imaging features are diverse and dependent on the affected site, degree of inflammation, and treatment the patient receives. Atypical manifestations and imaging findings can make diagnosis and/or management challenging. In addition, assessment of treatment response can be difficult in the setting of chronic disease. Fluorine 18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) PET/CT is sensitive for assessment of the inflammatory activity of sarcoidosis in any organ. Although FDG PET/CT is not included in the standard workup for sarcoidosis, there has been growing evidence that supports the value of this examination in guiding diagnosis and management. FDG PET/CT may be especially useful for assessing reversible granuloma, treatment response, disease extent, occult disease, and cardiac or osseous sarcoidosis, and determining the most suitable biopsy site. Capability to image the entire body during a single examination is advantageous in cases of systemic disease such as sarcoidosis. The authors review the use of FDG PET/CT, providing up-to-date evidence and describing various cases of sarcoidosis in which FDG PET/CT has an important role in diagnosis and/or management. They also discuss the usefulness of FDG PET/CT in cases of selective manifestations of sarcoidosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1536-1549
Number of pages14
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018


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