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Inicio Revista Española de Medicina Nuclear e Imagen Molecular (English Edition) Adrenal glands uptake patterns in 18F-Fluoroethylcholine PET/CT
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Vol. 39. Issue 2.
Pages 84-91 (March - April 2020)
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Vol. 39. Issue 2.
Pages 84-91 (March - April 2020)
Original Article
Adrenal glands uptake patterns in 18F-Fluoroethylcholine PET/CT
E.J. Bialeka,
Corresponding author

Corresponding author.
, M. Dziuka,b, E. Witkowska-Patenaa,b, P. Kwasiborskic, S. Piszczeka,b
a Department of Nuclear Medicine, Military Institute of Medicine, ul. Szaserów 128, 04-141 Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland
b Affidea Mazovian PET/CT Centre, ul. Szaserów 128, 04-141 Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland
c Angiology and Hemodynamics Laboratory, Regional Specialistic Hospital in Miedzylesie, Bursztynowa str. 2, 04-749 Warsaw, Poland
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Figures (4)
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Tables (4)
Table 1. 18F-Fluoroethylcholine uptake patterns in normal adrenal glands, without nodules or other focal abnormalities on CT.
Table 2. Maximal thickness of the adrenal glands, body, lateral and medial limb.
Table 3. The amount of Hounsfield Units (HU) in adrenal glands. The mean value measured in the central part of the thickest part of an adrenal gland in a small area region of interest and the point with maximal HU.
Table 4. The percentages of adrenal glands SUVmax to the SUVmax and SUVmean in the liver measured in the automatically generated 14ml sphere (SUV.aut) and in the large parenchymal area (SUV.vol.).
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To find reasons of different radioactive choline adrenal uptake in prostate or renal cancer patients who underwent 18F-fluoroethylcholine positron emission tomography/computed tomography.


Forty-nine positron emission tomography/computed tomography studies with radioactive choline (96 adrenal glands) were analysed with respect to the adrenal glands shape, uptake pattern and maximum standardised uptake value. Fifteen other parameters were recorded, assessed or counted, ratios of chosen parameters were calculated, and checked for correlation with adrenal glands uptake.


Adrenal glands presented a wide range of radioactive choline uptake intensities (range 2–7.9) and different uptake patterns (diffuse, focal or mixed). Maximum uptake in the right (4.3±1.2) adrenal gland positively correlated with the thickness of the parenchyma at the point of maximal uptake (5.3mm±1.5) (p=0.000). Maximum uptake in the right and left adrenal gland, as well as mean adrenal gland uptake, correlated with maximum uptake in the pituitary gland (p=0.000, p=0.000 and p=0.001, respectively) and with maximum uptake in liver (p=0.008, p=0.000 and p=0.011, respectively). Neither hormonal treatment nor patients' age significantly correlated with standardised uptake values of adrenal glands in the studied group.


The variability of radiocholine uptake in adrenal glands depends probably on overall body metabolism and hypophyseal function expressed by statistically significant correlation with liver and pituitary gland uptake.

Predominant focal or mixed with focal areas uptake patterns on positron emission tomography in normal in computed tomography adrenal glands should be assessed with caution to avoid a diagnostic mistake.

Adrenal gland
Positron emission tomography
Computed tomography


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