PET scan translation help. PLEASE!

Posted By
9/10/2010 9:57am
Replies: 4

Can anyone explain what this means - " There is new focal uptake within each ovary. This is likely physiologic."

and - " There is an ill-defined non hypermatabolic nodule/infiltrate in the right middle lobe. This is an area where previously there was a linear atelectasis." (Follow-up is recommended)




  Do you know what the SUV scores are?  Pet scans can show takeup for a number of reasons other than tumors.  

Insert Generic Inspirational Motto Here

First of all, PET scans pick up any type of metabolic activity. The new focal uptake in your ovaries is likely picking up on your time of the month. It would be unlikely that you would have a new tumor in each ovary all of a sudden.

Is the second one referring to your lung? There are lobes all over the place. Anyway, all they're saying there is there was something there previously, it's still there, and follow-up is recommended to make sure it's not a metastasis.

Of course, I'm not a doctor. He/She would be ther best one to interpret this for you. But that would be my take on it.



Stage IV

WLE, SNB, ILP, LND, PV-10, Uterine mets (Hysterectomy), GM-CSF, WBR, RT, Temodar, B-RAF negative, SRS (Novalis) to brain, Breast mets (Mastectomy), currently on Ipilimumab compassionate use trial
Mets to brain, lung and sub-qs. Craniotomy.

Anonymous - (9/10/2010 - 10:58am)

 "This is likely physiologic." means that the uptake is probably caused by normal physiologic activity, i.e. not caused by disease.

I don't have the knowledge to interpret the other sentence. Maybe call your doc and  ask to have it explained?


The ovary thing means your ovaries sucked up sugar.  They do that when you're close to ovulating.  That's normal, unless you are a man, and then you have bigger problems!

The other thing...  The good part is that  it's non-hypermetabolic, meaning it's not sucking up sugar, meaning it's not growing.  Cancer WOULD be hypermetabolic.  But they can't tell what it is (it's ill-defined...which could mean that the image is fuzzy, perhaps because of other body structures in the same area.  In PET they don't use contrast like in a regular CT, so they can't see size & shape as well.)  They want your doctor to do more tests to figure out what it is.  I don't have a clue what a "linear atelectasis" is.  I looked it up here: and it doesn't sound like too terrible of a thing.  Something about your lung not properly inflating.  So I'd guess that previously your lung didn't properly inflate (maybe they know that from your past history??) and now they see something in that area, and although it's not looking like cancer, they want your doctor to check it out.

So actually that sounds like a halfway decent PET to me.  Query the doctor when you get a chance, but meanwhile relax and enjoy the weekend!


Just keep going!