Fluorine 18 fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) has evolved to be an essential imaging modality in the evaluation of laryngeal carcinoma. Although the modality has limited utility in assessing the extent of the primary tumor, FDG PET has proved to be superior to anatomic modalities in the detection of lymph node and distant metastases. The role of FDG PET in the evaluation of patients with laryngeal tumors that are clinically classified as N0 has not shown consistent usefulness because of the innate resolution limitations of the camera. In the posttherapy setting, however, FDG PET has consistently demonstrated a high negative predictive value in the identification of recurrent disease, both during the course of therapy and during long-term follow-up. In addition, contrast material-enhanced computed tomography (CT) in conjunction with FDG PET has demonstrated a complementary role by allowing for superior anatomic coregistration and therefore more definitive diagnosis. There is sufficient evidence that with further advances in PET technology, this modality will likely become more useful in the detection of small lesions and occult nodal disease, as well as in guiding the management of laryngeal carcinoma.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging