Chest tube insertion as a potential source of false-positive FDG-positron emission tomographic results
Tomography, X-Ray Computed
Positron emission tomography with fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG PET) is an effective imaging technique for detecting and staging neoplastic and infectious disorders. However, FDG is a nonspecific tracer, and assessment of the nature of known abnormalities can be confounded by its accumulation in a variety of inflammatory lesions. Chest tube insertion is a common procedure in patients with a multitude of pleuropulmonary disorders, but a history of such a procedure is not always known to nuclear medicine physicians who interpret FDG-PET studies. Inflammation caused by previous chest tube insertion is a challenge and should be recognized to avoid false-positive results in such settings. This report documents a case that would have been confused with a cancerous condition in the absence of correlation with anatomic images and a detailed clinical history.