OBJECTIVE. The objective of our study was to compare the diagnostic performance of sequential 18F-FDG PET/MRI (PET/MRI) and 18F-FDG PET/CT (PET/CT) in a pediatric cohort with lymphoma for lesion detection, lesion classification, and disease staging; quantification of FDG uptake; and radiation dose. SUBJECTS AND METHODS. For this prospective study of 25 pediatric patients with lymphoma, 40 PET/CT and PET/MRI examinations were performed after a single-injection dual-time-point imaging protocol. Lesions detected, lesion classification, Ann Arbor stage, and radiation dose were tabulated for each examination, and statistical evaluations were performed to compare the modalities. Quantification of standardized uptake values (SUVs) was performed for all lesions. All available examinations and clinical history were used as the reference standard. RESULTS. No statistically significant differences between PET/MRI and PET/CT were observed in lesion detection rates, lesion classification, or Ann Arbor staging. Fifty-four regions of focal uptake were observed on PET/MRI compared with 55 on PET/CT. Both modalities accurately classified 82% of the lesions relative to the reference standard. Disease staging based on PET/MRI was correct for 35 of the 40 studies, and disease staging based on PET/CT was correct for 35 of the 40 studies; there was substantial agreement between the modalities for disease staging (κ = 0.684; p <0.001). PET SUVs were strongly correlated between PET/CT and PET/MRI (α > 0.72), although PET/MRI showed systematically lower SUV measurements. PET/MRI offered an average 45% reduction in radiation dose relative to PET/CT. CONCLUSION. In a pediatric cohort with lymphoma, sequential PET/MRI showed lesion detection, lesion classification, and Ann Arbor staging comparable to PET/CT. PET/MRI quantification of FDG uptake strongly correlated with PET/CT, but the SUVs were not interchangeable. PET/MRI significantly reduced radiation exposure and is a promising new alternative in the care of pediatric lymphoma patients.
- Ann Arbor staging
- Pediatric lymphoma
- Radiation dose
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging