FDG PET in primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) of the pericardium

Peeyush Bhargava, Elizabeth Glass, Jeffrey Brown, Elizabeth Eapen, Elizabeth Ames

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


We present the FDG PET images of a 49-year-old male AIDS patient with a history of Kaposi sarcoma who presented with increasing shortness of breath. The computed tomography (CT) scan of the chest showed a massive pericardial effusion, which was tapped. There was no other clinical or radiologic evidence (otherwise negative CT scan of the chest, abdomen, and pelvis) of lymphoma. A whole-body PET scan was performed after the intravenous administration of 11.0 mCi of F-18 FDG. The images showed physiological uptake in the myocardium, a photopenic defect around the heart corresponding to the pericardial effusion, lined by a hypermetabolic pericardium, consistent with neoplastic involvement. There was no other evidence of active neoplastic disease. Histopathologic analysis of the pericardial fluid showed findings characteristic of primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) and chemotherapy was started.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18-19
Number of pages2
JournalClinical Nuclear Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Effusion
  • FDG
  • Lymphoma
  • PET
  • Pericardium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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