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The response of FDG uptake to immunosuppressive treatment on FDG PET/CT imaging for cardiac sarcoidosis.

BACKGROUND: Immunosuppression is used to treat cardiac sarcoidosis, despite limited data. FDG PET/CT is used for detecting cardiac inflammation in patients with CS, yet there is variability in interpretation of FDG PET/CT. Our aim was to compare quantitative and qualitative interpretation of FDG PET/CT for CS in defining the FDG response to immunosuppression.

METHODS AND RESULTS: Patients with CS (N = 43 total studies from 17 patients) had serial FDG PET/CT studies before/after immunosuppression. FDG uptake was analyzed qualitatively (visually; FDG-positive segments) and quantitatively (SUVmax; cardiac metabolic volume and activity (CMV, CMA); volume above SUV thresholds 2.7 and 4.1 g/mL). Complete resolution of FDG uptake was common using CMA (10/17), CMV (10/17), but a 2.7 g/mL SUV threshold (13/17) and SUVmax (14/17) were more likely to define partial responses. In six patients imaged after a reduction in immunosuppression, 4/6 had a rebound quantitative FDG uptake.

CONCLUSIONS: Quantitative interpretation of FDG PET/CT in CS can detect changes in FDG uptake in response to immunosuppression. Further studies are needed to see if quantitative changes in FDG uptake are associated with improved outcomes.

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