Hematologic malignancies comprise a set of prevalent yet clinically diverse diseases that can affect every organ system. Because blood components originate in bone marrow, it is no surprise that bone marrow is a common location for both primary and metastatic hematologic neoplasms. Findings of hematologic malignancy can be seen with most imaging modalities including radiography, computed tomography (CT), technetium 99m (99mTc) methylene diphosphonate (MDP) bone scanning, fluorine 18 (18F) fluoro-deoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)/CT, and magnetic resonance (MR) imaging. Because of the diversity of imaging appearances and clinical behavior of this spectrum of disease, diagnosis can be challenging, and profound understanding of the underlying pathophysiologic changes and current treatment modalities can be daunting. The appearance of normal bone marrow at MR imaging and FDG PET/CT is also varied due to dynamic compositional changes with normal aging and in response to hematologic demand or treatment, which can lead to false-positive interpretation of imaging studies. In this article, the authors review the normal maturation and imaging appearance of bone marrow. Focusing on lymphoma, leukemia, and multiple myeloma, they present the spectrum of imaging findings of hematologic malignancy affecting the musculoskeletal system and the current imaging tools available to the radiologist. They discuss the imaging findings of posttreatment bone marrow and review commonly used staging systems and consensus recommendations for appropriate imaging for staging, management, and assessment of clinical remission.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging