A comparison of the diagnostic value of MRI and 18F-FDG-PET/CT in suspected spondylodiscitis.
de Rooy, JWJ
de Geus-Oei, L-F
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography and computed tomography (PET/CT scan) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in diagnosing spondylodiscitis and its complications, such as epidural and paraspinal abscesses.From January 2006 to August 2013 patients with a clinical suspicion of spondylodiscitis, with an infection, or with fever of unknown origin were retrospectively included if 18F-FDG-PET/CT and MRI of the spine were performed within a 2-week time span. Imaging results were compared to the final clinical diagnosis and follow-up data were collected.Sixty-eight patients were included of whom 49 patients were diagnosed with spondylodiscitis. MRI showed an overall sensitivity of 67 % and specificity of 84 %. Diagnostic accuracy was 58 %, when MRI was performed within 2 weeks after the start of symptoms and improved to 82 %, when performed more than 2 weeks after onset of symptoms. 18F-FDG-PET/CT showed a sensitivity of 96 % and a specificity of 95 %, with no relation to the interval between the scan and the start of symptoms.As compared to MRI, 18F-FDG-PET/CT has superior diagnostic value for detecting early spondylodiscitis. After 2 weeks both techniques perform similarly.
Version of record
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Sensitivity and Specificity
Aged, 80 and over
Positron Emission Tomography Computed Tomography
Translational Molecular Imaging
License start date
Infection, 2017, 45 (1), pp. 41 - 49