Do gadolinium-based contrast agents affect 18F-FDG PET/CT uptake in the dentate nucleus and the globus pallidus? A pilot study

Kyle Bauer, Alaina Lathrum, Osama Raslan, Patrick V. Kelly, Yihua Zhou, Debra Hewing, Crystal Botkin, James A. Turner, Medhat Osman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


Gadolinium is toxic and to avoid its deposition in tissues, it must be chemically bonded with nonmetal ions to facilitate its excretion by the kidneys. High signal intensity in the dentate nucleus (DN) and globus pallidus (GP) on unenhanced T1- weighted MR images has been both morphologically and pathologically linked to gadolinium-based contrast agent (GBCA) retention in the brain. The purpose of this study was to determine whether repeated administrations of GBCA would affect the uptake of 18F-FDG in the DN and GP on PET/CT. Methods: Three hundred seventy-six patients who underwent both contrast-enhanced MR (CE MR) of the brain and PET/CT from January 2004 to October 2015 were identified. Patients with a history of brain irradiation or hepatic or renal disease were excluded. The SUVmax was measured in the DN and GP on the PET/CT scan in patients who had 3-6 successive CE MR brain studies. The SUVmax of the corresponding areas in the control group of patients who had not undergone previous CE MR and who had a normal, unenhanced MR finding of the brain was also measured. A Wilcoxon 2-sample test was used for statistical analysis. Results: Fifteen of 376 (4%) patients (mean age ± SD, 54 ± 18 y; 10 men and 5 women) were included in the subject group, and 15 patients (mean age ± SD, 36 ± 9 y; 11 men and 4 women) were included in the control group. The median DN SUVmax was significantly lower in the subject group than in the control group (5.4 vs. 6.4, respectively; P 5=0.021). Similarly, the median GP SUVmax was significantly lower in the subject group than in the control group (8.8 vs. 12.1, respectively; P 5=0.003). Conclusion: The median SUVmax in the DN and GP was 16% and 27% lower, respectively, in patients who received GBCAs than in those who had not received GBCAs, possibly related to gadolinium deposition in these areas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)302-305
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Nuclear Medicine Technology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017
Externally publishedYes



  • Dentate nucleus
  • Gadolinium
  • Globus pallidus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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