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How we read: the combined use of MRI and novel PET tracers for the characterisation and treatment planning of masses in neuro-oncology

Authors
  • Lasocki, Arian
  • Hicks, Rodney J.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Cancer Imaging
Publisher
BioMed Central
Publication Date
Aug 19, 2019
Volume
19
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1186/s40644-019-0241-5
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

Technical advances in imaging are well demonstrated by MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and PET (Positron Emission Tomography). Excellent anatomical detail and a lack of ionising radiation make MRI the standard of care for most neuroimaging indications, and advanced sequences are providing an ever-growing ability for lesion characterisation. PET utilising the tracer fluorine-18 fluorodeoxyglucose is widely used in oncology, while newer PET tracers are able to target a growing number of metabolic pathways and cell membrane receptors. The sequential use of these modalities harnesses the strengths of both, providing complementary diagnostic and therapeutic information. Here we outline the ways in which we use MRI and PET in a complementary manner to improve lesion characterisation in neuro-oncology. Most commonly, an abnormality is detected on either PET or MRI, and the addition of the other modality allows a more confident diagnosis and/or demonstrates additional lesions, guiding treatment decisions and, in some cases, obviating the need for biopsy. These modalities may also be combined to guide the treatment of intracranial masses for which the diagnosis is known, such as neuro-endocrine tumour metastases or meningiomas refractory to conventional therapies.

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